Argia Rambur, 1842 (Coenagrionidae) - Dancers


Fig. 1: Argia fumipennis larva (6x, dorsal view), from River Raisin, Lenawee Co., Michigan,
collected by M. F. O'Brien and E. Bright on 02 May 1997. UMMZODO-1111.


Notes - Michigan Species List - Key - References
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Page last updated: 01/26/2017

Notes on the Michigan Species of Argia

A very speciose New World genus of coenagrionid damselflies, most species are found in Central and South America, and many more species there remain to be described. Five species have been recorded in Michigan (see below). A. apicalis, A. sedula and A. tibialis are known only from the Lower Peninsula; the other two species - A. fumipennins and A. moesta - are widespread throughout the state.

These robust larvae (Figure 1) are distinguished from our other coenagrionids by large, flattened prementum that lack premental setae and have three pointed hooks (one movable hook and two pointed palpal lobes). Unlike most other coenagrionids in Michigan, Argia are principally lotic, inhabiting slow-moving sections of streams and rivers, but our species are also found in lentic habitats. A. moesta has been found along rock-margined lake sections and under rocks of stream rapids (Walker 1953), and A. apicalis, A. sedula and A. tibialis along lake shores, ponds, ditches or swamps (Westfall and May 1996).

Other links with information on the biology or ecology of larval Argia:
New Jersey survey, with brief habitat notes >>http://www.hsrl.rutgers.edu/cumb.cape.txt
Venezuela water quality survey >>http://www.redpav-fpolar.info.ve/entomol/v09-1/v0901a04.html (Spanish and English summaries)
Houston, Texas area survey, with brief habitat notes >>http://www.io.com/~pdhulce/dragon3.html
Ottawa, Ontario survey, with brief habitat notes >> http://www.cyberus.ca/~jdsankey/odon2.html
Argia vivida conservation status in British Columbia, Canada >>http://rbcm1.rbcm.gov.bc.ca/End_Species/es_franc/species/vdancer.html
Information for obtaining German 16mm movie on egg-laying habits of Argia moesta >> http://www.iwf.gwdg.de/iwfger/alldaten/E2997.html (German)

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Michigan Species List

Map 1 Map 2 Map 3 Map 4 Map 5
Maps 1-5:Distribution of the Michigan species ofArgia, based on MOS data
Click on map for a larger image

Map 1 - Argia apicalis (Say, 1839) - Blue-fronted Dancer
Map 2 -
Argia fumipennis (Burmeister, 1839) - Variable Dancer
Map 3 -
Argia moesta (Hagen, 1861) - Kiowa Dancer
Map 4 -
Argia sedula (Hagen, 1861) - Blue-ringed Dancer
Map 5 -
Argia tibialis (Rambur, 1842) - Blue-tipped Dancer


Key to Mature Larvae of Michigan Argia
(Adapted from
Westfall and May 1996)

1a. Lateral gills with both dorsal and ventral marginal fringe of stout setae at least 0.75x that of the total marginal length (picture); dark femoral band usually distinct (picture) - 2

1b. Lateral gills with ventral marginal fringe of stout setae no more than 0.66x that of the total marginal length, much shorter or lacking on the dorsal margin (picture) - 3


2a.(1a). Antennal segments 1 and 2 pale (picture); femoral dark bands narrower than intervening spaces (picture) - A. sedula

2b. Second antennal segment partially or entirely dark (Figure 2b1); femoral dark bands usually quite distinct on inner surfaces (picture) - A. fumipennis

Fig. 2b1
Fig. 2b1: Argia fumipennis larva (25x, dorsal view), from River Raisin, Lenawee Co., Michigan, collected by M. F. O'Brien and E. Bright on 02 May 1997. UMMZODO-1111.

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3a.(1b). Lateral carina of lateral gills with stout setae, if any, rather scattered, restricted to the basal 1/4 of the gill, and with numerous fine hairs (picture); hind femora each with one wide, dark band (picture); tracheation of gills usually not distinct (picture) - A. moesta

3b. Lateral carina of lateral gills with setae extending at least 1/3 the length of the gills (picture); palpal setae 0-4 (picture) - 4
Back previous couplet (2); Back to beginning of key


4a.(3b). Palpal setae 2-4 (picture); lateral gills usually widest at about the mid-point, about 2/5 as long as long (picture); dark bands of femora usually wider than the intervening spaces - A. apicalis

4b. Palpal setae usually 1 (picture); lateral gills usually widest distinctly beyond the mid-point, about 1/3 as wide as long (picture); dark bands of femora usually narrower than the intervening spaces (picture) - A. tibialis
Back previous couplet (3); Back to beginning of key

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References

Burmeister, H. 1839. Handbuch der Entomologie. Vol 2. Enslin: Berlin. Pp 397-1050.

Hagen, H. A. 1861. Synopsis of the neuroptera of North America, with a list of the South American species. Smithsonia Miscellaneous Collections 4:1-347.

Rambur, M. P. 1842. Histoire naturelle des insectes Neuropteres. Roret: Paris. 534 pp.

Say, T. 1839. Descriptions of new North American neuropterous insects and observations on some already described by (the late) Th. Say. Journal of the Academy of Natural Science of Philadelphia 8:9-46.

Walker, E. M. 1953. The Odonata of Canada and Alaska. Vol. 1. University of Toronto Press: Toronto, Ontario. xii + 292 pp.

Westfall, and M. J. May. 1996. Damselflies of North America. Scientific Publishers, Inc.:Gainesville, Florida. x + 659 pp.

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