Yellow Clubtail - Gomphus simillimus

Scientific Name: Gomphus simillimus.

English Name: Yellow Clubtail.

French Name: Le Gomphe semblable.

5 Key Characters:
  • the tip of the abdomen is quite enlarged.
  • a yellow line down the middle of the entire length of the abdomen.
  • the black 'shoulder' stripes are as wide or wider than the pale line in between them (usually about equal).
  • legs are striped black and yellow.
  • the yellow body is quite bright.
Lookalikes: Other species of Gomphus. Common Clubtail G. vulgatissimus, which does not have yellow on the legs or the yellow stripe on the abdomen right to the tip. Western Clubtail G. pulchellus is paler and duller. River Clubtail G. flavipes has a pair of yellow ovals completely surrounded by black on the front of the thorax. Pronged Clubtail G. graslinii is rare and has thicker black markings on the 'shoulders'. For more details about distinguishing between these species see Sorting out the Clubtails a post on our daily blog Days on the Claise. Nowhere else in Europe can you see so many species of Gomphid in the one area.

Habitat: Flowing water from streams to big rivers, sometimes oxbow lakes and old gravel pits. Males patrol the banks, frequently landing on vegetation or rocks. They can also be found on tracks, especially in the morning and evening. A lowland species.

Flight Period: April-May-June-July-August.

Status: Localised in this area and listed as Vulnerable on the European Red List. More common in the Touraine du Sud than it is in the Brenne.

Photographed by Loire Valley Nature:

All photos will enlarge in a new window if you click on them. Row 1 - 2 male at la Croix-Sourd, May.

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