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Update June 22 2005: click here to see two males from the same location yesterday.

Update September 01, 2004: John Abbott has received the male specimen shown at the bottom of this page, and confimed it as Ringed Forceptail Phyllocycla breviphylla - the first ever male caught in the U.S.

Update August 27, 2004: added pics of a specimen caught yesterday by David Dauphin that looks like the same thing, plus an analysis of them compared to Phyllogomphoides - at the bottom.

This Clubtail Gomphid sp. was found by Sheridan Coffey and photographed by Martin Reid near Bentsen State Park, Hidalgo County Texas on Aug 24, 2004; indications are that it is a Phyllocycla - most likely breviphylla, but possibly elongata; click here to see the first record of this genus from North America, and note that two female P. breviphylla were taken in easternmost Cameron County in May 2004 by Omar Bocanegra:

Note in the pic below that the S8 flange you can see is the one of the far side, because the photo is taken from slightly below the ode - the nearside S8 flange is pointing stright at the camera and is thus invisible:-

Update August 27, 2004: Yesterday David Dauphin caught this Gomphid at the Mission West RV Park, Hidalgo County (a few miles due north of the location where the ode above was found;) photos by Jan Dauphin. The general condition and eye color indicate that this is a young male. Allowing for the typical maturation color changes evident in close relatives (e.g. Aphylla:- the pale thoracic stripes change from yellow to pale greenish; the dark thoracic stripes darken from mid-brown to blackish-brown; the color of the S8S9 club becomes more russet ), I feel that these are the same species:-

One other contender needs examination - Phyllogomphoides albrighti:

- but there are numerous differences:-

The pale lateral thoracic stripes are a different shape: on our bugs the anterior and median stripes are about the same width and fairly even throughout their length, with a wide posterior stripe that is again of fairly even width; albrighti has the anterior stripe bulging at its lower end while the median stripe thins there, creating a large difference in them at their lower ends, plus the posterior pale thoracic stripe is pinched in near the top and almost severed by the dark stripes on either side.

The pale anterior marks on segments 3 -6 are different: on our bugs they do not extend dorsally, are split by black ventrally, and taper as they progress downwards laterally; on albrighti these pale marks extend dorsally into long narrow points, are split by black dorso-laterally, and remain about the same width as they go downwards laterally.

The shape of S8 - S10 differs (in lateral view): on our bugs the dorsal plane of S8 and S9 is parallel (even), with S10 then angling downwards; on albrighti S10 also angles downwards, but there is a distinct upwards angle preceding it between S8 and S9.

The shape and color of the cerci are different: on our bugs the cerci are dark (blackish) and in lateral view have a deep base, tapering towards the posterior tips; on albrighti the cerci are pale (yellowish) and are rather slim, being of about equal depth in lateral view. Also, in dorsal view our bugs have a much sharper "hook-in" - resembling Aphylla - than albrighti.

The face is a different shape: on our bugs the face is decidedly thin, or shallow (it looks like the bug flattend its face on a window!); albrighti has a more typical, fuller face. Click here to visit Dave Czaplak's pics of his female Phyllocycla and some specimens; note that his female and the specimen labelled elongata also have "pug" faces, while the two labelled breviphylla have normal face depths..... Note also that in terms of the thoracic pattern, the elongata is much more like our bugs than are the breviphylla - ?