One late evening I found this whitish bodied damselfly resting on a dry twig in the garden. It was quite dark outside. So I picked up my macro rig which consisted of Canon EOS 5D mark II fitted with Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM. For illumination I used ExpoImaging Ray Flash Adapter fitted on to Canon Speedlite 580EX II flash. It was sitting almost close to the ground in a very tight corner. As focusing was difficult, I used my Canon Right Angle Finder and photographed this damselfly almost lying down on the ground. If I had flippable live view finder like Canon EOS 600D it would have been wonderful. Due to the low light I was not able to see the damselfly properly. Fortunately the white body of the damselfly helped in my focus. Even though I was very close to the ground, the background was not clear as it was surrounded by bushes. I could later identify that it was a Male Yellow Bush Dart damselfly (Copera marginipes)
Male Yellow Bush Dart is little larger than female. Characteristic feature of Yellow Bush Dart is a black band which extends from eye to eye. Male Yellow Bush Dart has eyes which are black above, greenish on sides and beneath with black equatorial band. Thorax is bronze black with fine yellow lines on sides. The stripe on sides is narrow and pale greenish yellow. Legs are bright yellowish orange. Wings are transparent. Wing spot is brown. Abdomen is bronzed black above. Segment 3-6 with a pale stripe along the side and a narrow pale greenish white ring at the end of each segment.
The specimen I had was more whitish than brown that was because the damselfly was in the teneral phase. Teneral is the period when the adult insect is newly emerged from the pupal case or nymphal skin. During the teneral period, the insect’s exoskeleton has not hardened or darkened, leaving it vulnerable. The term comes from the Latin tener, meaning soft, young, and tender.
Female Yellow Bush Dart’s ground color is dark with varying shades of brown. Eyes are similar to the male but has a brown cap. Thorax is brown. The black stripe above is similar to that of males and black stripe on sides is irregular. Legs are brownish. Wings are transparent. Wing spot is pale brown. Abdomen is brown above with broad rings towards the end. Half of 8th segment and the whole of 9-10th segments pale brownish white.
Found along ponds, puddles, canals and streams. Flies less than a meter above the ground. It breeds in shallow water collections, such as rainwater puddles and backwaters of streams. Flight season is from August to November. Distributed throughout the oriental region.
EXIF info – Aperture : ƒ/16 | Camera : Canon EOS 5D Mark II | Taken : 14 August, 2011 | Flash fired : yes | Focal length : 100mm | ISO : 100 | Location : 12° 55′ 20.028″ N 74° 51′ 55.2096″ E | Shutter speed : 1/125s | Images and content Copyright © Krishna Mohan. Please contact me to purchase prints or for image publication license.