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Neon Skimmer

Libellula croceipennis

Neon Skimmer, Libellula croceipennis, photo © by Robert Witzman

This adult male was observed at Mesquite Wash, Maricopa Co., Arizona, USA. October 2009. Photo by Robert Witzman offers several Odonata field trips through Maricopa Audubon Society each year.

This dragonfly is common in riparian habitats in the mid and upper elevations of the Sonoran Desert. The male's abdomen and pronotum are both pinkish irridescent red. The light golden-brown females are permitted to lay eggs in stream-stretches guarded by males only if that male is allowed to mate first. Thus males protect ideal habitat from rival males; ideal means shallow flowing waters that may be partially shaded by cottonwoods and sycamores. The nymph stage lives as an aquatic predator and the adults are predaceous as well taking flying insects such as midges and mosquitoes.

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