The Manitoba Dragonfly Survey, a project of the Manitoba Wildlife Branch in partnership with NatureNorth, is a volunteer-based survey of Manitoba's diverse population of dragonfly species. Citizens interested in participating can obtain a manual explaining how to capture and identify dragonflies over the course of the summer. Each species of dragonfly has a different period of activity between late May and early September, and as a result, different species can be found at different times. Many species can be identified by the volunteer and quickly released, but for hard-to-identify species, specimens can be preserved and sent to the Wildlife Branch for identification.
Dragonflies are of interest for several reasons, not the least of which is their ability to keep the mosquito population down. They spend a large part of their life cycle in water, and are thought to be excellent indicators of environmental stresses like pollution. Changes in dragonfly populations can thus be indicators of the overall health of our local lakes, waterways and surrounding ecosystems.