Flame vs Neon Skimmers

Two large orange/red skimmers that occur in Arizona and can be present at a same location are the Flame(Libellula saturata) and Neon (L. croceipennis) Skimmers.

Males are relatively easy to separate but females are quite similar.

Male Comparison

Overview

Flame Skimmer

  • Mostly orange.
  • Wings have a large amber patch that extends to the pterostigma. The hindwing has a darker orange/brown midbasal stripe.

Neon Skimmer

  • Abdomen and front of thorax are bright red.
  • Wings have much less orange than in the Flame Skimmer. The hindwing lacks a darker orange/brown midbasal stripe.
  • Pterostigma more elongated than in Flame Skimmer.

Male Flame and Neon Skimmers, AZ.

Female Comparison

Overview

Flame Skimmer

  • Wings usually with some orange (but can be clear).
  • First longitudinal wing veins are partly yellow.

Neon Skimmer

  • Wings are mostly clear.
  • Wing veins are orange and lack yellow.
  • Pterostigma is more elongated than in Flame Skimmer.
  • Flap on abdominal segment 8 (S8) is more developed than in Flame Skimmer

Female Flame and Neon Skimmers, AZ

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