Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Dancers in the Desert

A few days ago, Betsy and I visited the Thousand Palms Oasis Preserve in the Coachella Valley, near Palm Springs, California. The temperature was in the mid 80s, and the desert was abloom with a variety of flowers. Here's the view from the valley floor, with Mount San Jacinto in the background.

There were few birds at the oasis on that day, but plenty of damselflies—in particular, dancers. Here's a male California Dancer showing off his beautiful colors:

Notice the typical dancer stance, with wings held high above the abdomen.

We also saw Vivid Dancers there, and here's an example:

Notice the backward pointing black "arrowheads" along the side of the abdomen, and the differently shaped side stripes on the thorax, compared with the California Dancer.

No dragonflies were seen, but it's good to know the vanguard of the odonate population is out in force.