Posts Tagged ‘Argia fumipennis violacea’

Variable Dancer (mating pair, “in heart”)

November 23, 2016

A mating pair of Variable Dancer damselflies (Argia fumipennis violacea) was spotted at Mulligan Pond, Jackson Miles Abbott Wetland Refuge (JMAWR). This pair is “in heart“: the male is on the upper-left; the female on the lower-right.

A mating pair of Variable Dancer damselflies (Argia fumipennis violacea) spotted at Mulligan Pond, Jackson Miles Abbott Wetland Refuge, Fairfax County, Virginia USA. This pair is "in heart."

14 JUN 2016 | JMAWR | Variable Dancer (mating pair, “in heart“)

In the following photo, the male is on top; the female on the bottom.

A mating pair of Variable Dancer damselflies (Argia fumipennis violacea) spotted at Mulligan Pond, Jackson Miles Abbott Wetland Refuge, Fairfax County, Virginia USA. This pair is "in heart."

14 JUN 2016 | JMAWR | Variable Dancer (mating pair, “in heart“)

The taxonomic classification of Variable Dancer is as follows: Order Odonata (Dragonflies and Damselflies); Suborder Zygoptera (Damselflies); Family Coenagrionidae (Narrow-winged Damselflies); Genus Argia (Dancers); Subspecies Argia fumipennis violacea (Violet Dancer).

Variable Dancer is a habitat generalist that can be found almost anywhere there is water. Mature males are easy to recognize due to their unique coloration — there are no other species of violet damselflies found in the eastern one-third of the United States. Female Variable Dancers, like many female odonates, are more challenging to identify than males.

It’s helpful to get shots of mating pairs of damselflies, especially “in tandem,” since males and females of the same species can look quite different. The excellent high-resolution digital scans by Gayle and Jeanelle Strickland, listed under “Related Resources” (below), provide clear views of male and female Variable Dancer damselflies.

Related Resources: High-resolution digital scans created by Gayle and Jeanelle Strickland.

Copyright © 2016 Walter Sanford. All rights reserved.

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Violet Dancer damselflies "in tandem"

August 9, 2011
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A mating pair of Violet Dancer damselflies (Argia fumipennis violacea) spotted during a photowalk through “Paul Spring Park,” one of seven small parks owned and maintained by the Community Association of Hollin Hills, Fairfax County, Virginia USA.  Formerly known as “Variable Dancer,” the Violet Dancer is classified as one of three subspecies of Variable Dancer damselflies.

Odonata, an order of insects including dragonflies and damselflies, reproduce in three stages: in tandem; in wheel (sometimes called “in heart” for damselflies); and oviposition. The damselflies shown in the preceding photo gallery are “in tandem,” in which the male uses claspers at the end of its abdomen to hold the female by its thorax. Therefore, the male damselfly is on the upper-right in the preceding photos; the female on the lower-left. See “Violet Dancer damselfly” (one of my recent Posterous posts) for more photos of a male Violet Dancer.

Photo 1 of 3 is a copy of the original photograph, cropped to highlight the damselflies; Photo 2 of 3 is the original photograph. Photo 1 was cropped and adjusted using AppleAperture.

Violet Dancer damselfly

July 20, 2011
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A Violet Dancer damselfly (Argia fumipennis violacea) spotted during a photowalk through the “Wildlife Sanctuary,” one of seven small parks owned and maintained by the Community Association of Hollin Hills, Fairfax County, Virginia USA. The individual shown in the preceding photo gallery is a male, as indicated by its purple and black coloration; the tip of its abdomen is colored blue. Formerly known as “Variable Dancer,” the Violet Dancer is classified as one of three subspecies of Variable Dancer damselflies.

Photo 1 of 3 is a copy of the original photograph, cropped to highlight the damselfly; Photo 2 of 3 is the original photograph. Photo 1 was cropped using Apple Aperture.


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