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genus: Leucorrhinia


These dragonflies are small and mostly black in color.  The thorax  and slim abdomens are usually patterned in red or yellow  depending upon sex and maturity. Pruinosity is seen in some adult speies. Wings are mostly clear but may have a black basal spots.  Their faces are white, hence their name "Whitefaces".

Females are the same as males or yellowish where the male is red.

Whitefaces are difficult to ID in the field since many of them look similar,  with the juveniles it is Sometimes necessary to examine in the hand, comparing terminal appendages and wing venetion to completely determine it's identification since coloring is highly variable within the species.

The whitefaces are closely related to the meadowhawks and are similar in shape and behavior.  They differ in having bright white faces and small dark basal wing patches, are generally blacker in coloration, and fly earlier in the season.

This genus is commonly found flying low and perching often on vegeation around  peat bogs, sedge marshes. lakes and ponds with floating vegetation.  It is among the few dragonflies you see in early spring.

© 2018 Sheryl Chacon Search