How can you not be dazzled by this fine fellow, all dressed up in a snazzy turquoise that glows like neon? Surely you've noticed them, zipping about to perch momentarily on a weed stem or grass blade near a pond or slow-moving stream.
As a species, Double-Striped Bluets (Enallagama basidens) were once limited to the Southwest Region of the U.S. But over the last century, they've gradually expanded their range north and east, all the way into New England and lower Ontario.
Identification is pretty easy—especially on the males. Look for two black shoulder stripes divided by a narrow band of blue. No other damselfly sports this divided shoulder marking. Females and immatures can be tannish-brown-to-olive instead of blue, but they'll still have the characteristic double-stripe.
While not the biggest damselfly in the pack at 21-28 mm, their gaudy color easily catches the eye. And when you can blaze for the ladies like a bright blue arc-lamp, does size really matter?