Skimmers

May 2, 2012 | Greg Dodge

Two skimmers have begun to show themselves around the Wetlands. They are the Blue Dasher (Pachydiplax longipennis) and the Eastern Pondhawk (Erythemis simplicollis). These two dragonfly species can be seen at nearly every pond or river in the state so there’s nothing unusual about their appearance. In fact, they’re two of the most common and familiar of all dragonfly species. What their appearance does do is mark the passing of the season.

A male Blue Dasher perched on Smartweed.

Most of the early season dragonflies have come and gone, or are on their way out, and the more widespread (in respect to flight season) of the order are starting to appear. These two dragons will be seen throughout the spring and summer, and into fall.

An immature male Eastern Pondhawk on a blade of grass on the Dino Trail (males turn blue with age).

What’s a skimmer? A skimmer is a member of perhaps the most familiar family of dragonflies. Most skimmers are fairly large, colorful, and frequent places where people can see them.

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