Saturday, January 21, 2017

Species Spotlight: American Rubyspot

Next up in our species spotlight series is a damselfly with colorful wings, which is a bit unusual for damselflies.

The American Rubyspot is named for the ruby-colored patches at the base of its wings. You can see the patches in the following photo of a male perched above a small stream—its preferred habitat. To its left is a Blue-ringed Dancer, showing off its intense blue colors. What a contrast in colors this pair makes.

Here's a bit closer view of a male American Rubyspot.

Notice the white wings veins in the ruby patch.

The American Rubyspot uses its wing patches to attract females, and to fend off rivals. In the next photo a male flashes its patches to ward off another damselfly (a California Dancer in this case) that was attempting to land on its perch. Notice that it is also bending the tip of its abdomen forward in a very threatening posture.

The brilliant colors and aggressive pose was effective at convincing the California Dancer to find another perch.

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