Saturday, April 23, 2016

Plateau Spreadwing at Bosque del Apache

One of the fun things about our recent visit to Bosque del Apache was seeing a new "life ode."

We were driving along the north loop road when we noticed a nice pond with lots of emergent vegetation.  It looked like a good spot to see some damselflies, so we stopped to check it out.  I saw some forktails there, and almost immediately saw some spreadwings as well.  Looking at them through my binoculars I could tell they were a species I wasn't familiar with, so I took some pics for later research.  It turns out they were Plateau Spreadwings, a new odonate for us.

Here's one of the first pics I got of this species.  This individual was some distance away, but my point-and-shoot camera did a pretty good job of getting a shot.

I like the iridescence in the wings.

Here's a closer shot, showing the distinctive thorax stripes – a light-colored stripe on the "shoulder", and a broad brown stripe below it.

As seen in this picture, spreadwings do sometimes perch with their wings held together, though the usual pose is with the wings spread, as in the first picture.

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