Nebraska Dragonflies and Damselflies

University of Nebraska State Museum - Division of Entomology

Broad-winged Damselflies

Calopterygidae Family

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Broad-winged Damselflies are so called because their wings are not abruptly narrowed or stalked near the base, as are the wings of other damselflies. The body color of these damselflies is often metallic. The eyes are black in males and brown in females. They have a skipping flight similar to that of butterflies. There are three species of Broad-winged Damsels found in Nebraska.

Ebony Jewelwing
Ebony Jewelwing female
American Rubyspot
American Rubyspot female. Photo courtesy of Terry Hibbitts.

The Jewelwings (genus Calopteryx) have iridescent bodies which usually appear green but have blue reflections at certain angles. The males lack stigmas and the females have white stigmas. The Jewelwings are the only North American damselflies with a courtship display.

The Rubyspots (genus Hetaerina) are the only North American damselflies with red spots in the wing bases. The males have metallic red or black bodies and the females have metallic green or brown bodies.

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Citation: Paseka, J. M. 2021. Nebraska dragonflies and damselflies. URL