Roseate skimmer

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Roseate skimmer
Roseate Skimmer perched on a twig (August 2003).jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Odonata
Infraorder: Anisoptera
Family: Libellulidae
Genus: Orthemis
O. ferruginea
Binomial name
Orthemis ferruginea
(Fab., 1775)

The roseate skimmer (Orthemis ferruginea) is a species of dragonfly in the family Libellulidae. It is native to the Americas, where its distribution extends from the United States to Brazil. It is common and widespread.[1] It is an introduced species in Hawaii.[2]

The male of the species has a rose pink and red abdomen. The female has an orange-brown abdomen with clear orange veins and a brownish thorax with a light stripe down the back. The wings are normally clear except for brown pterostigmata at the leading edges. It is 46–55 millimetres (1.8–2.2 in) in length with a wingspan 35–44 millimetres (1.4–1.7 in) long.[3] Males are highly territorial, defending their territory aggressively against other male roseate skimmers that fly near.[4]

It tolerates a wide range of habitat types, but usually requires open water. This can include disturbed and artificial water bodies, such as tanks and ditches. It can live in open or vegetated land. It breeds in the mud.[5]


  1. ^ a b Paulson, D.R. (2017). "Orthemis ferruginea". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2017: e.T164944A80681748. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2017-3.RLTS.T164944A80681748.en. Retrieved 18 November 2021.
  2. ^ Orthemis ferruginea. Waipi'o Valley Stream Restoration Study. Bishop Museum. 2010.
  3. ^ "Odonata Central". Archived from the original on 2019-07-25. Retrieved 2019-07-25.
  4. ^ Brown, Taylor A., et al. “Space Use of Predatory Larval Dragonflies and Tadpole Prey in Response to Chemical Cues of Predation.” The American Midland Naturalist, vol. 181, no. 1, 2019, p. 53., doi:10.1674/0003-0031-181.1.53.
  5. ^ Paulson, D. R. 2009. Orthemis ferruginea. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.1. Downloaded on 22 July 2013.