Hines Emerald Dragonfly
Hine's Emerald Dragonfly
The Hine’s emerald dragonfly is among the most endangered dragonflies in the United States. The habitat is only found in limited locations throughout the upper U.S. Midwest and only within the Lower Des Plaines River watershed in Illinois. The habitat of the Hine's is a rare and localized type of wetland found within multiple sub-watersheds of the Lower Des Plaines.

The state- and federally-endangered Hine's emerald dragonfly has in some ways become a symbol of conservation in the Lower Des Plaines valley. The Hine's emerald - so named because of its brilliant emerald green eyes - appears to begin its life in cool shallow, slow-moving waters, spring-fed marshes, and seepage sedge meadows. Most larvae have been found along the edges of and in the shallow water of narrow channels. Adults usually fly over open areas of herbaceous vegetation and feed in meadows and fields that have groups of shrubs near breeding habitat (small areas of shallow water). Adults may live from five to six weeks.
Hine's Emerald Dragonfly Habitat Conservation Plan Project Overview
Three Illinois-based companies — ComEd, Hanson Material Service and Midwest Generation — have joined forces to create and submit a Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) for the Hine’s emerald dragonfly (HED), a federally endangered species found in only four states. The HCP is a requirement to obtain permits allowing the companies to continue essential operations in and around the Lower Des Plaines River Valley, which has been identified as breeding ground for the dragonfly. In order to maintain electric transmission lines, access power generation facilities and continue other essential community services, these three companies must ensure that their operations have positive conservation benefits for the dragonfly and its habitat.

The proposed HCP will be the first formalized strategy in the U.S. to address the habitat management issues of the Hine’s emerald dragonfly. Municipalities and landowners within the dragonfly’s essential habitat have been invited to join the plan because any expansion or development on those lands impacts the dragonfly’s fragile habitat. By engaging stakeholders from industry, private institutions and public agencies, this HCP will serve as a positive model for other states to demonstrate that economic development goals can coincide with the preservation of habitat and wildlife.
Education & Outreach: Supported by Biodiversity Project
To support commitments and plans by municipalities/organizations to adopt and implement stormwater BMPs beneficial to the HED habitat, the IDNR HED/HCP grant calls for education and outreach support. Provided by Biodiversity Project, an environmental communications non-profit, the education and outreach support will take the form of a BMP toolbox, fact sheets, brochure and other as-yet-to-be-determined materials. Working with Biodiversity Project, partners will help identify the types of materials needed to support the HCP commitment/plan and ensure its success.
Education Group
US Fish & Wildlife Website links:
General Information about the Hine's emerald dragonfly HERE
Habitat Conservation Plans (HCP) general overview HERE
Hine's emerald dragonfly Recovery Plan (2001) HERE
Information on its Endangered Status HERE