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Evening Skimmer



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Tholymis citrina

Hagen, 1867


Order Odonata
Suborder Anisoptera
Superfamily Libelluloidea
Family Libellulidae
Genus Tholymis
Species citrina Hagen, 1867 [Tholymis]


Identification

This is a medium-sized species capable of efficient strong flight. Its face is pale yellow but darkens with age and becomes metallic blue along with the top of the frons and vertex in mature males. The thorax is olivaceous brown and unmarked, but the front and sides become bluish black in older males. The wings have a spot of amber below the nodus, brown crossveins and a tawny pterostigma. The dark spot is ill-defined and more diffuse in the forewing. Generally there are three paranal cells before the anal loop. The legs pale and armed with dark spines. The abdomen is pale brown with a middorsal stripe that is darkest on segment 9. The caudal appendages and segment 10 are pale in young individuals, but they darken with age in both sexes.

Size

Total length: 48-53 mm; abdomen: 32-40 mm; hindwing: 36-39 mm.

Similar Species

No other skimmer in the region has only a single amber spot below the nodus. Some shadowdragons (Neurocordulia ) may look superficially similar, but they have heavier markings in the wings. Also check ranges of species.

Habitat

Vegetated ponds and lakes

Discussion

This species has only been reported in North America on three occasions. Once from the southern tip of Florida and the other two records are from Texas. A single female was collected by Smith and Hodges from the Rio Grande Valley (Hidalgo Co.), in 1950 and in 2003 T. Langschied found a male on the King Ranch. This species' normal distribution is southern Mexico southward to Brazil. It is a crepuscular flier which may explain in part the paucity of records.

Distribution

Stray to south Florida and Texas; also Mexico, West Indies, Central America south to Brazil and Chile.