This individual is an immature male, as indicated by its red eye color, blue partial pruinescence, and terminal appendages. When male Blue Dashers mature, their eyes are blue-green and their abdomen is completely blue except for the black tip.
Some dragonflies, such as Blue Dasher, regulate their body temperature by perching in the “obelisk position”: the tip of the dragonfly’s abdomen is pointed toward the Sun, minimizing the surface area of the body exposed to direct heating by the Sun’s rays, thereby avoiding overheating.
Another immature male was spotted at the same location about a week later.
Did you notice this individual has a malformed wing? A lot can go wrong when a dragonfly metamorphoses from a larva to an adult!
Copyright © 2015 Walter Sanford. All rights reserved.
Tags: Blue Dasher dragonfly, Huntley Meadows Park, immature male, malformed, obelisk position, Pachydiplax longipennis, pruinescence, sexual dimorphism, Skimmer Family, terminal appendages, vernal pool, wildlife photography