Normally I’d just post on iNat. But what I have in mind is not quite that.
I’d like to know whether there is any field-observable difference between two dragonflies of the Tramea genus, namely virginia (Asia) and carolina (America). At least from photos, I don’t detect a difference.
(Why? In case I visit America. Fun to know what is distinctive about carolina. Might take care to include it when I photograph one.)
Since I am not an entomologist, I’d be better off getting advice on the matter. I’m guessing the answer probably isn’t out there on the internet already - the motivation of mine being quite original.
Do you think asking a natural history museum would be the way to go? I remember and have just looked up the London natural history museum which does invite the public to send them ID queries. I don’t know about other museums of the same genre - e.g. I just looked up the Smithsonian and don’t find the same.
Has anybody tried this before? What was the response? Would you recommend it?
I don’t know what distinguishes these two species of Tramea other than their allopatric distributions but you might see if there’s an odonate expert in India who could advise, for starters. Not sure if the experts in North America have experience with this Asian species. There must be a Tramea expert somewhere who has examined specimens of both.
Correction: or an expert in Hong Kong where you are. I’m sure there must be more than one odonate specialist in your area.
Butterfly descriptions on Wiki can be very detailed,
I just wish there was one website I could go to, and every dragonfly description (with that level of detail) would be quoted!
Not that I fully understand entomological jargon, but at least the resource would be there
E.g. in the case of birds, you have a very comprehensive Birds Of The World managed by the same people as eBird
I sometimes use the Australian museum for queries and id help. They may take a week or 2 but are very helpful.
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