Monday, August 29, 2011

Blue-fronted Dancer

Blue-fronted Dancers are damselflies named for their bouncy flight. This summer I found them to be common along many area waterways.  Males, like the one in the first photo, are fairly distinctive.  Field marks include their blue bodies (with very thin black lines separating the body parts) and the terminal azure abdomen segments.
I find dragonflies and damselflies to be difficult to identify. Immature males can resemble other damselflies. Female Blue-fronted Dancers complicate matters by coming in two forms, blue and brown. Blue females look like males, but lack blue-tipped abdomens. Brown females are similar to other female dancers, and I have relied on Scott King for my identification of the brown female below. (Kirk Mona recently blogged, "What if everyone could tell if you'd had sex? Ask a Dragonfly." I am tempted to title this post, "What if your prospective mates look like different species?")

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