My Dragonfly Book

Several years ago I was considering writing a book on Victoria's dragonflies and damselflies, having seen and photographed nearly every species in the state. As I started collating some photos I realized many were not of publishable quality. For example, in latter years I wasn't bothering trying to photograph the very common Blue Skimmer Orthetrum caledonicum very well as I already had many photos but it turned out they were not really of very good quality. So having a reasonable camera by then I went out and ensured I got decent photos of all species I needed. During the past couple of seasons I also managed to finally find Nighthawk Apocordulia macrops, the last extant species within the state I had not seen.

Initially I was going to cover south-eastern Australia but I was missing too many species from New South Wales so decided to restrict it to Victoria. Having recently visited Tasmania in February I also recorded 4 of their 5 endemic species so the book could almost be expanded to cover that state too, and indeed a followup visit in November I got the final Tasmanian endemic. So that's why the book became the "Dragonflies and Damselflies of Victoria and Tasmania".

At this stage I was putting things together and had images with nice margins just most other field guides. I then realized things look better without margins so had to go through and re-edit all the photos to fit the full page. It also turned out that since Southwestern Billabongfly Austroagrion cyane had been found in Victoria there were no species in South Australia that weren't also in Victoria, so the book can also be used as a complete guide for SA (but no distribution maps or flight times are provided).

So after about 250–300 hours of editing time (including separation into damsels and dragons and then recombining) a book was born. It is available from the Entomological Society of Victoria (launched at the October 15 meeting). Cost is $30 (plus $5 postage within Australia or $20 to America or Europe).

» download sample...

Posted on 28 September, 2019 10:36 by reiner reiner


Your photos are always fantastic, will be a great book

Posted by thebeachcomber over 4 years ago

Terrific. Consider me lined up in the virtual queue for a copy :-)

Posted by gumnut over 4 years ago

Fantastic! Looking forward to owning a copy.

Posted by terrymuns over 4 years ago

Amazing! Looking forward to getting my own copy at the meeting :)

Posted by d_kurek over 4 years ago

Wow! Between iNaturalist and the book, sleep much? Looking forward to getting the book.

Posted by vicfazio3 over 4 years ago

Great stuff Reiner. I'm queued.

Posted by argybee over 4 years ago

Great work on getting it finished! Can't wait to see it :)

Posted by tleitch over 4 years ago

Best wishes for the book launch Reiner, I am sure it will be a hit. What a feat!

Posted by graham_winterflood over 4 years ago

They have finally got around to making the sample available online and the order form too (currently the PDF order form is still missing the dragonfly book but hopefully that will be fixed shortly).

Posted by reiner over 4 years ago

Excellent news for me Reiner, happy to see you managed to put all your hard work into this, with a little help from Ian Endersby, I assume.
Australia needed this.
I can see you got the Diphlebia lestoides oviposition image at Aberfeldy Bridge in Dec. 2017.
I will be in southern Queensland in January, after a visit to some islands out in the sea.
A big congratulation !

Posted by erlandreflingnielsen over 4 years ago

I've been looking forward to this being released. I'll order a copy now.

Posted by zosterops99 over 4 years ago

Its got all the Tassie species but I'm missing the female of one. The photos have all been posted here or on BowerBird so you've probably seen them already.

Posted by reiner over 4 years ago

Congrats on the book. It looks like a must have for the ID shelves.
I am stunned by the number, variety and quality of observations you upload. I know how time consuming it is, being out there, trying to get the shots, (especially for your standards,) editing, uploading. identifying (or in my case, attempting), locations... and I only do a few now and then!
very impressive

Posted by sarinozi over 4 years ago

Reiner and Ian,
Having just received my copy of Dragonflies and Damselflies of Victoria and Tasmania, I must congratulate you on an excellent publication. It is very well presented, the photographs are sharp, and distribution maps with flight-time graphs will be very useful for keen observers. Where a particular feature needs highlighting to aid in species identification, a circle is drawn on a close up of the characteristic. This will be a very useful tool for observers of Odonata in the States represented. It is my opinion that the book should be a “must have” reference guide.
Graham Winterflood

Posted by graham_winterflood over 4 years ago

I'm a late arrival in this trail, but will try to get a copy. Congratulations, an inspiration to so many!

Posted by davemmdave about 4 years ago

Thank you for all that you do Reiner. Now that I know you have a book I am going to get it ! And congratulations on your being highest uploads of 2021 - that is a massive achievement - I have no idea how you could be uploading 500 insects per month! Amazing.

Posted by rachelleferrier about 3 years ago

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