Return to the Butterfly Garden Forum | Post a Follow-Up

OT: Slaty Skimmer

Posted by misssherry Z8/9SE MS (My Page) on
Tue, Jul 15, 14 at 15:11

I know this is the butterfly forum and not the dragonfly forum, but I saw this dragonfly down the road perching on some canes growing in a wet area. This area also has false nettles - it's where I took a cutting that started the false nettles on my property. Unfortunately, there were no caterpillars on the nettles, at least that I could see.

There were dragonflies there that were SO blue, indigo blue, I'd say. They kept knocking each other off their cane perches. According to my dragonfly field guide, a male slaty skimmer is most likely what this one is. It even said the males were very aggressive with each other, like these were.

Anyway, I thought I'd share -

 photo MaleSlatySkimmer_zps40f1dcd9.jpg


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: OT: Slaty Skimmer

I like Dragonflies too, along with other insects.


RE: OT: Slaty Skimmer

Your photography is nothing less than perfect. What a beautiful shot of a beautiful insect!

RE: OT: Slaty Skimmer


A male Slaty Skimmer is glossy jet black.

I have several holding territories on my abt 17' wide by 30' long
Dragonfly pond.I give pond size because that determines numbers
Of males able to hold territories.

I will post more from Picts in DRAGONFLIES THRU BINOCULARS
In terms of info

My IPAD has to battery up

See ya


RE: OT: Slaty Skimmer


Plate 33 photo of a Slaty male on page 183 info given was clear
Wings & all black color. 2".(right under that one is a pict of one
Of your pink/red Roseates!)

So I could only find over on Plate 39 page 211 a male Eastern
Pondhawk 1.7" that was blue(all over).The eyes were dark green.
The wings were clear.
Did you increase saturation? The info given said body color
Pale blue and that is the color of the Blue Dashers(smaller)
I see on my pond,and what I thought were the larger Easterns.

I will look for a bluer dragonfly.This book is of North American
Dragons,but author could only use Picts in the field He could get!

Love your Photos

RE: OT: Slaty Skimmer

DD, my book Beginner's Guide to Dragonflies says of slaty skimmers, "A common and conspicuous , large, dark dragonfly. MALE: Thorax and abdomen entirely dark slate blue, often appearing black. Wings clear, with black stigmas and narrow dark tips. Eyes blackish."

I increased the saturation a little bit to compensate for the color lost when I 'sharpened' the picture. I had to sharpen it, because I used my long zoom, and it was slightly blurry. These dragonflies were really that color, that's why I wanted to get a picture.

We have lots of eastern pondhawks here, with the green females and the blue males with their green heads. We also have a lot of common whitetails, but, like the eastern pondhawk, their blue is much paler. These dragonflies were VERY dark blue. Actually there are several other blue ones I thought they might be, but the wing markings only matched the slaty skimmer.

I'm still a newbie at dragonflies - maybe one day I'll be able to ID them all. Speaking of which, do you know the name of a BIG, black dragonfly? A few years ago a real super sized one showed up in fall, I think it was. The color was plain, just black with clear wings, maybe some black markings on the wings, I can't remember. But I've never forgotten it, and I've never been able to ID it.

I love seeing the roseate skimmers in fall! I saw a pair of them mating one year. I had a hard time getting any picture of one at all, because I only had my old camera, which had no decent zoom, and every time I got close enough for a picture, they'd fly off. Here's my (lousy) picture -

 photo RoseateSkimmer.jpg

Maybe this fall I can get another picture, only with my new camera.


RE: OT: Slaty Skimmer

Here's a link to a picture of a slaty skimmer.

What do you think?


Here is a link that might be useful: Slaty Skimmer

RE: OT: Slaty Skimmer

I have got a 2" black slender body,white stigmas,round black nodal
Spots.(I think those spots refer to the spots half-way down the clear
Wings). The pict was on plate 42 page 225.

It is a Four-Spotted Pennant (Brachymesia herbida)

The map is placing it right across you as it continues on to Texas.

Using the common and Latin name you can probably find a pict.

If that's not it I will try to look elsewhere.

I have these bucket chairs to sit in around the pool with my
Binoculars; the dragonflies are used to me and are not shy
(except for the big Darners). I once had a curious male Slaty
Leave his perch and come over to light on the arm of the chair.
These locals are quite blackish so I would be pleased to see
One of those who shade to blue as I take interest in the variations.

The Roseates are in my range and I would so much love to see one.
I wish I could see the west coast butterflies too(also the Mexicans).


RE: OT: Slaty Skimmer

I have Buckeyes across the road...
There are not as many food plants up high yet,but enough to
Start & I saw a new emergent drying it's wings in the sun.

The Tropical Milkweed is still blooming,and had 3 Palamedes
Visiting this morning,also a Spicebush Swallowtail which then
Moved over to nectar at a quite large blue bloom spike on
A Pickerel weed in the pond.

We had rain yesterday,but it is still hot.

Typical weather for Covington/Coffee counties.

I found another all blue dragonfly,eyes look greenish,wings
Look like a Slaty.It is 2.2".
It is called the Great Blue Skimmer(Libellula vibrans) note: the
word vibrans..."vibrant" has significance for me.

This dragonfly is all over your state on the map.


RE: OT: Slaty Skimmer

Two beautiful photos. Your first dragonfly photo, was super beautiful.

 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the Butterfly Garden Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here