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Golden-winged Dancer

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Argia rhoadsi

Calvert, 1902

Order Odonata
Suborder Zygoptera
Superfamily Coenagrionoidea
Family Coenagrionidae
Genus Argia
Species rhoadsi Calvert, 1902 [Argia]


The face of the male is blue and there are two large postocula r spots separated by a pale occipital bar. The antehumeral stripe is pale blue and equal in width to the black middorsal thoracic stripe. The black humeral stripe is approximately a third the width of the antehumeral stripe and may be forked at its upper end. The lower fork is often faint and irregular in shape. There is a short black stripe at the upper end of the interpleural suture that is contiguous with the black antealar carina. The legs are pale blue with dark stripes on their outer femoral surfaces and inner tibial surfaces. The tarsi are brown armed with black spurs. The wings are flavescent or amber with a nearly black pterostigma. There are 4 and 3 postquadrangular cells in the fore- and hindwings, respectively. Abdominal segment 1 is entirely blue. Segment 2 is blue with a dark dorsolateral stripe widening posteriorly. Segments 3-7 are largely black with metallic reflections dorsally. From above, each segment has a blue basal ring and a pale middorsal stripe that may not re ach the apex. Segments 8 through 10 are entirely blue. The cerci and paraprocts are both entire and not bifid. The cerci are no more than 2/3 the length of the paraprocts and possess a ventrally directed anteapical tooth. The female is similarly patterned to the male, but is tan and the black markings are less extensive. The narrow black middorsal stripe is approximately 1/7 the width of the mesepisternum. There are short dark stripes posteriorly on the interpleural and metapleural sutures. The mesostigmal plates are mostly dark with pale lateral edges and dorsally, there is a posteromedially directed lobe projecting over a shallow dark pit. Mesepisternal tubercles are vestigial or absent entirely. The legs are tan with black markings much less extensive, but armed with black spurs. The wings are amber with a paler pterostigma than in the male. The abdomen is tan in color with an ill-defined pattern. There is a dark stripe laterally widening towards the apex of segment 2. Segments 3-7 each have narrow blue basal ring and a pale middorsal stripe, running their entire length. Segments 8-10 are entirely light tan and unmarked.


Total length: 34-35 mm; abdomen: 27-28 mm; hindwing: 19-21 mm.

Similar Species

The smaller Blue-ringed Dancer (A. sedula ) may have tinted wings, but they are not as dark as in Golden-winged Dancer and the thorax is darker. Male Blue-ringed Dancers also have black markings ventrolaterally on segments 8-10 that are not present in Golden-winged Dancer.


Lagoons and pools formed at edges of streams and rivers.


There is not much known about the biology of this Mexican species. The larva was described from exuviae and terminal instars collected at Laguna de Atezca, in the Mexican state of Hidalgo where they were found clinging to roots of water hyacinth, Eichhornia sp. at the edge of the lagoon. Laboratory emergences occur in the late morning. The species is presently only known from two localities in the United States. It is has at Fort Clark Springs in Kinney Co., Texas where a well-established poulation exists and it is historically known from the Lower Rio Grande Valley.


Texas south into Mexico.