Monday, November 3: I was searching for Rusty Blackbirds in the wet woods of Lakeshore Park in Novi (Oakland County). A nearly dry pond allowed me to walk around the area. Initially there were a couple of Autumn Meadowhawks (Sympetrum vicinum) flitting about and I soon realized there were several pairs of spreadwings (Lestes sp.) coupled and laying eggs on cattails.
These Spotted Spreadwings (Lestes congener) represent a new late date for Michigan. The previous late date was October 30.
Tuesday, November 4: I decided to make another attempt to find Great Spreadwings (Archilestes grandis) at the only known location in Michigan. Nannothemis and/or myself had made a few checks earlier in the season and feared they weren't present in the Livonia location this year.
Initially I found a male Fragile Forktail (Ischnura posita) which represented a new late date for Michigan. The previous late date was October 16. There were two males and two females present. Here's one female:
Within minutes a female Great Spreadwing (A. grandis) landed in front of me. Not only did I confirm their population was still present but it represented a new late date for Michigan. The previous late date was October 16. There were two or three males and one female present.
Here's the last male I observed:
Also present was one male Autumn Meadowhawk (Sympetrum vicinum). Not a late date but getting close to the record of November 13.
I doubt I'll find any further late dates this year since a cold front will arrive in the next day and we'll return to typical November weather with highs in the 40s (which doesn't normally include flying insects).