Species of the genus Libellula (king skimmers) often perch on shoreline vegetation, are stout bodied, and usually have distinctive body and wing patterns.
The spangled skimmer has black and white stigmas (near tips of the wings) on their wings. At base of the wings, there are small black streaks. The females have amber streaks near the stigmas and brown-tinted wing tips. The body length varies from 1.6 to 1.8 inches. The male is dark gray-blue with a black face and dark green eyes. The female has a tan face, red brown eyes, a pale yellow thorax with one brown stripe, a yellow abdomen with black dorsal stripe and a flange near the end of abdomen.
Ranging throughout eastern United States, this species can be found at ponds, long-lasting puddles, lakes, and slow streams, often with water lilies, cattails, or other vegetation. It also may be found at ponds inlets or outlets. In Wisconsin, we are at the northwestern limit of its range, and it is known from only a few southern counties.
The flight season, throughout its range, is from late April to early September. In Wisconsin, a few adults have been documented in late May and late June.