Sizable dragonflies, the Yellow-sided Skimmer visits weedy areas near bogs or ponds, looking for insect prey.
Males and females have different appearances, but they still recognize each other without issue. Male Yellow-sided Skimmers develop a powdery blue color over the thorax and tail. Yellow peeks out from the thorax under his wings. The wings are mostly clear, but the leading edge has a smoky orange line from base to tip. The eyes are dark. Females have yellow sides on the long abdomen and a black stripe runs down the 'spine'. Her wings also have a smoky orange line, but are dark and sooty at the tips. Her thorax has clear yellow marks. Her face is light tan and brown.
Wet areas with standing water are common habitat for this species. The Yellow-side Skimmer is active early in spring and through autumn. Males are defensive of territory and check for trespassers by circling the perimeter of it.
Scientific Name: Libellula flavida
Dragonfly or Damselfly
Size (Adult; Length): 35mm to 48mm (1.37in to 1.87in)
Colors: yellow; black; orange; blue
Descriptors: powder blue; orange wings; black wing tips; orange edge; yellow tail; black stripe on back; flying
Note: An insect's reach is not limited by lines drawn on a map and therefore species may appear in areas, regions and/or states beyond those listed above as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns. Grayed-out selections indicate that the subject in question has not been reported in that particular territory. U.S. states and Canadian provinces / territories are clickable to their respective bug listings.