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Atoning for posting the image of that creepy (even by my standards) sun spider the other day, here’s something that I think most will agree is extraordinarily beautiful. This is a Lavender Dancer.
This gorgeous little damselfly is described as a common and fairly widely distributed species that can be found in the vicinity of small creeks with rocky bottoms. It shows up in a lot of places in Arizona. I photographed it a few days ago at Tohono Chul Park, a semi-private park on Tucson’s west side. Tohono Chul has a tiny artificial creek surrounded by an almost equally tiny but attractive riparian habitat. This damselfly and several others of its species were congregating on low growing vegetation in bright sunlight, just a few yards from the park’s “creek.”
Lavender Dancers, like most damselflies, are really petite. They are a little over an inch in length and not much thicker than a piece of string. It’s hard to spot them and when one does they normally look pretty nondescript from a distance of more than a foot or two — just generic damselflies without anything special about them. But, when viewed up close their extraordinary violet pigmentation becomes apparent. Stumbling across something as beautiful as this is always a treat for me.
Image made with a Canon 5DS-R, 180 mm f3.5L Macro Lens assisted by Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite and stabilized by monopod, M setting, ISO 160, f14 @ 1/160.