This is one of the largest North American spreadwings, varying from 2.0 to 2.4 inches. The male's thorax is dull greenish bronze above with broad diagonal yellow stripe on sides. The abdomen is dark with a blue-gray tip. The eyes and face are blue. The female is similar to the male but more brown on the body.
Found in most of United States, this species seems to prefer slow small streams, often with alder or willows, wetlands, ponds and temporary pools. Originally, it was found in the southwest, but over time, it expanded its range throughout most of United States, including New England. In Wisconsin, it has been recently found in a few southern counties.
In Wisconsin, the normal flight season extends from early August to mid-October with occasional individuals found in late July and as late as November in years with unseasonably warm temperatures.