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Double-striped Bluet (Enallagma basidens)

Detailing the physical features, habits, territorial reach and other identifying qualities of the Double-striped Bluet

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Image Credit: Alex- icycatelf- Bowen
Full-sized image of the Double-Striped-Bluet-Damselfly Thumbnail image of the Double-Striped-Bluet-Damselfly

The narrow blue line on the thorax of the Double-striped Bluet are a helpful feature for identifying this summertime damselfly.

Updated: 09/23/2020; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ©www.InsectIdentification.org
Damselflies are slender, flying insects that are commonly found near water. The Double-striped Bluet is no exception. The two noticeably thinner pale lines on the thorax sit near the 'shoulder' area. Males have blue lines among black stripes; females have pale blue, white, or tan lines among the black stripes. The last two segments of the long abdomen on the male are completely blue, but the female's may be tan or only partly blue.

The common resting position has the wings flattened together near the body. Water is necessary for egg-laying, so adults are often seen near streams, pond, lakes, and slow rivers. They move quickly, but they are harmless to people. Their diet of pest insects like mosquitoes and flies means they are a beneficial insect to humans as well as the ecosystem.

General Characteristics
Capability, Shape, Texture/Pattern, Benefits, Dangers
Flying insect icon
Harmless insect icon
Striped or banded insect icon


Taxonomic Hierarchy
Species Breakdown
Kingdom: Animalia
  Phylum: Arthropoda
    Class: Insecta
      Order: Odonata
        Family: Coenagrionidae
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          Genus: Enallagma
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            Species: basidens
Identifying Information
Size, Colors, Features
Scientific Name: Enallagma basidens
Category: Dragonfly or Damselfly
Size (Adult; Length): 21mm to 28mm (0.82" to 1.10")
Colorwheel Graphic Colors: blue, black, yellow, green, tan
Descriptors: thin lines, thorax, blue tip, flying, skinny tail, harmless, beneficial

Relative Size Comparison
Typical Size Between 21mm (0.8in) and 28mm (1.1in)
Lo: 21mm
Md: 24.5mm
Hi: 28mm
Territorial Map*
U.S., Canada, and Mexico
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Prince Edward Is.  
* MAP NOTES: The territorial heat map above showcases (in red) the states and territories of North America where the Double-striped Bluet may be found (but is not limited to). This sort of data is useful when attempting to see concentrations of particular species across the continent as well as revealing possible migratory patterns over a species' given lifespan. Some insects are naturally confined by environment, weather, mating habits, food resources and the like while others see widespread expansion across most, or all, of North America. States/Territories shown above are a general indicator of areas inhabited by the Double-striped Bluet. Insects generally go where they please, typically driven by diet, environmental changes, and / or mating habits.


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