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Common whitetail (female)

Plathemis lydia

Description:

The male's chunky white body (about 5 cm long), combined with the brownish-black bands on its otherwise translucent wings, give it a checkered look. Females have a brown body and a different pattern of wing spots, closely resembling that of female Libellula pulchella, the Twelve-spotted Skimmer. Whitetail females can be distinguished by their smaller size, shorter bodies, and white zigzag abdominal stripes.

Habitat:

The Common Whitetail can be seen hawking for mosquitoes and other small flying insects over ponds, marshes, and slow-moving rivers in most regions except the higher mountain regions. Periods of activity vary between regions.


1 Species ID Suggestions

Common Whitetail
Plathemis lydia Common Whitetail


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2 Comments

Jake Barnes
Jake Barnes 6 years ago

That's interesting. Thank you for the help

Gordon Dietzman
Gordon Dietzman 6 years ago

This happens is a female Common Whitetail. The males start off looking like this as well, but become increasingly pruinose (white or gray) as they mature. They also have a different wing pattern.

Jake Barnes
Spotted by
Jake Barnes

Prairie View, Texas, USA

Lat: 30.24, Long: -95.51

Spotted on Jul 1, 2012
Submitted on Jul 1, 2012

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Reference