Lestidae is a rather small family of cosmopolitan, large-sized, slender damselflies. They are of the order of the dragonflies (Odonata) and are commonly known as spreadwings. The two subfamilies in Lestidae are Lestinae and Sympecmatinae. Damselflies in Lestinae rest with their wings partly open; the damselflies in Sympecmatinae, reedlings, ringtails, and winter damselflies, rest with their wings folded.
While most damselflies rest with their wings folded together, most members of the family Lestidae hold them at an angle away from their bodies. The pterostigma (a single dark spot in the meshwork of the leading edge near the tip of each wing) is noticeably elongated. The quadrilateral (a part of the wing venation, close to the body) has an acute angle at the end. The body has a greenish, metallic shine. The superior anal appendages, commonly called claspers (body parts of male insect for clasping the female during copulation) of male spreadwings are long and strongly curved.
The genetic makeup is still disputed, going from 12 genera to eight genera.