Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
Clickable Guide
Moths Butterflies Flies Caterpillars Flies Dragonflies Flies Mantids Cockroaches Bees and Wasps Walkingsticks Earwigs Ants Termites Hoppers and Kin Hoppers and Kin Beetles True Bugs Fleas Grasshoppers and Kin Ticks Spiders Scorpions Centipedes Millipedes

Upcoming Events

Discussion, insects and people from the 2018 BugGuide Gathering in Virginia, July 27-29

Photos of insects and people from the 2015 gathering in Wisconsin, July 10-12

Photos of insects and people from the 2014 gathering in Virginia, June 4-7.

Photos of insects and people from the 2013 gathering in Arizona, July 25-28

Photos of insects and people from the 2012 gathering in Alabama

Photos of insects and people from the 2011 gathering in Iowa

Photos from the 2010 Workshop in Grinnell, Iowa

Photos from the 2009 gathering in Washington


Species Libellula luctuosa - Widow Skimmer

WIDOW SKIMMER - Libellula luctuosa Dragonfly - Libellula luctuosa - male Dagonfly- Rootbeer w/powder blue on wings= blue body - Libellula luctuosa - male Mystery Dragonfly - Libellula luctuosa - male Anisoptera - Libellula luctuosa - male dragonfly 1 - Libellula luctuosa Which dragonfly is this? - Libellula luctuosa Dragonfly2018-001 - Libellula luctuosa
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Odonata (Dragonflies and Damselflies)
Suborder Anisoptera (Dragonflies)
Family Libellulidae (Skimmers)
Genus Libellula
Species luctuosa (Widow Skimmer)
Other Common Names
Explanation of Names
The species name means sorrowful or mournful, perhaps because the wings of both male and female seem to be draped in mourning crepe.
One of 24 Nearctic species in the genus.
Mature males have a large basal area of brown on each of the four wings, and each wing also has a whitish area roughly at the middle. Their brown bodies become increasingly pruinose (whitish) as they get older.

Females and immature males have the same brown wing bands as the mature males, but not the whitish areas. Wings usually have a brown tip. A dorsal view of the abdomen shows a brown band at center with a yellow stripe running along each side.
Found across most of the United States except the Rocky Mountain region. The range continues southward across the Mexican border. The Widow Skimmer has been reported from four Canadian provinces: Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, and Nova Scotia.
Most commonly found at lakes and ponds, sometimes at streams, and sometimes well away from water.
Most commonly seen in the Summer, but in Spring and Fall as well in warmer areas.
Flying insects.
Print References