Very small for snaketails, the pygmy snaketail is about 1.2 to 1.3 inches long. Stocky, the thorax is olive-green with brown stripes. The abdomen is black with bright yellow markings. There is a yellowish orange tint at base of hindwings. The eyes are green and legs are black.
This is an uncommon species that is known to be found in Wisconsin and along the east coast from West Virginia to Maine, especially along Appalachian Mountains. Pygmy snaketails like clean big rivers with clear, fast-moving water and gravel/sand bottoms. They are rarely found in small rivers. It also seems that they cannot breed below dams due to the altered habitat conditions. In Wisconsin, it has been infrequently found in northern counties.
Late May to early July in Wisconsin.