Blue dasher

Pachydiplax longipennis

The blue dasher is a dragonfly of the skimmer family. It is common and widely distributed in the United States and Canada.

Mature males develop a bluish-white pruinescence on the back of the abdomen and, in western individuals, on the thorax. They display this pruinescence to other males as a threat while defending territories at the edge of the water.


Although the species name ''longipennis'' means "long wings", the wings are not substantially longer than those of related species. Females do, however, have a short abdomen that makes the wings appear longer in comparison. The blue dasher grows up to 25–43 mm long. Juvenile males will show female coloration before they turn blue. Females are paired with yellow stripes on the dorsal side of the first 8 abdominal segments, the part of the body that lies between the thorax and the pelvis and encloses the stomach, intestines, liver, spleen, and pancreas; more commonly known as the belly. Females are also reported to turn blue, but at a slower rate then the males.
Blue Dasher (Pachydiplax longipennis) At the edge of a wetland habitat.

Wish I would have gotten a clearer shot! Augh! Blue dasher,Geotagged,Pachydiplax,Pachydiplax longipennis,Summer,United States,blue dasher,dragonfly,wetland,wetlands

Distribution

Males and females of the blue dasher dragonfly's are very different. Males are more conspicuous where the females are more elusive so really the population size really depends.
Blue Dasher  Blue Dasher,Geotagged,Pachydiplax longipennis,Summer,United States,dragonfly,insect,macro

Behavior

As the blue dasher ages, the wings will wear and tear. Females will lay eggs in the aquatic vegetation. Their life span is usually year
Blue Dasher These are plentiful in my area in the summer, but they are hard to photograph because they don't usually pose like this but this one took a break just long enough for me to get this shot.   Blue dasher,Geotagged,Pachydiplax longipennis,Summer,United States

Habitat

They are found by ponds, lakes, marshes, and bogs. They can also be found in almost aywhere when there is still water. Larvae are very tolerant of wetlands with poor water quality and low dissolved-oxygen levels."The naiads live in submerged vegetation. They do not actively pursue prey but wait for it to pass by, a strategy which affords them protection from other predators. The naiads of this species can tolerate water with low oxygen content. This is used by biologists in Florida who interpret their presence as a possible indicator of low water quality. Naiads emerge as adults at night. Adults generally fly from late June to October. Hunting occurs from perches on twigs and rocks. This is the only member of this genus." http://imnh.isu.edu/DIGITALATLAS/bio/insects/drgnfly/libefam/palo/palo.htm
Blue Dasher Male hanging out in the desert next to a manmade pond on a golf course Blue dasher,Geotagged,Pachydiplax longipennis,Summer,United States

Reproduction

After a males and a female mate, the female flies singly, without the male attached, to lay her eggs by dipping the tip of her abdomen in the water while hovering above its surface.
Blue Dasher - Pachydiplax longipennis Stout, mostly blue dragonfly. Thorax has pale yellowish-green sides with three brown stripes. Face is mostly white. Wings are clear to slightly smoky.

 I spotted this dragonfly on its perch next to a pond. I got within a foot of it, yet it did not budge - totally unwilling to give up its favorite, special spot. 

https://www.jungledragon.com/image/62820/blue_dasher_-_pachydiplax_longipennis.html Blue dasher,Geotagged,Pachydiplax longipennis,Summer,United States,dragonfly

Food

These dragonflies primarily eat tiny flying insects.They will eat just about anything, but their favorite meals are ''mosquito larvae''. The meals change when they hatch into adults, but the insatiable appetite does not.

References:

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Taxonomy
KingdomAnimalia
DivisionArthropoda
ClassInsecta
OrderOdonata
FamilyLibellulidae
GenusPachydiplax
SpeciesP. longipennis