A team of approximately thirty Mississippi Mills residents have organized to encourage the preservation of Gomphus Quadricolor – also known as the Rapids Clubtail Dragonfly – an endangered species still found very sparsely in a couple of patches along the Mississippi River. To raise awareness of the dragonfly, this “Clubtails club” of concerned citizens launched a design contest late last year with hopes that a “dragonfly logo” – or an exceptional promotional graphic – would be created. Today a winner and winning design is announced.
This beautiful and adaptable design was created by Sam Hamilton, an illustrator and graphic designer living and working in Almonte, Ontario. See more of Sam’s artworks at samhdesign.com. Sam is awarded a $200 prize for his design. (Funds for this first prize and for the runners-up were donated by residents of Mississippi Mills.) Beth McCubbin (Gatineau), Chris Hume (Almonte) and Linda Manzer (Almonte & Toronto) were runners-up and were awarded gift certificates to local Almonte art shop, JB Arts. (JB Arts, generously, also contributed to these prizes.)
The Rapids Clubtail (Gomphus quadricolor) was the first dragonfly placed on the Endangered Species list in Canada. It is currently known only from two rivers in Ontario, the Mississippi River and the Humber River. The endangered populations on the Mississippi River inhabit the Almonte falls area, Blakeney Rapids, Pakenham rapids and areas downstream of these. The dragonfly and its habitat face threats from pollution and degradation of river and shoreline habitat.
Plans to use the new stylized image of “Gomphy” are in the works. Posters, t-shirts, perhaps stickers and flags sporting the new image are all possible fund-raising ideas for the near future. The Clubtails club of dragonfly advocates came together from a variety of other local groups, including The Mississippi RiverWatchers, The Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists, The Stop Enerdu group and others. Members includes residents of the three wards of Mississippi Mills (the town of Almonte being one ward), scientists, teachers, engineers, politicians, naturalists, reporters and other concerned individuals. For more information on this group and any upcoming, awareness-building activities, please join the Rapids Clubtails of Mississippi Mills Facebook page or visit www.millstonenews.com, where news will be posted as available.