The dancers (Argia species) are sometimes similar in appearance to the bluets (Enallagma species) and may require in-hand examinations to separate them. Dancers can always be identified by the long setae on the front of their tibiae, which are twice as long as the intervening spaces. In all other pond damsels, these setae are only about as long as the intervening spaces. The females generally are duller than males and more difficult to identify. The "bouncy" flight of the dancers also distinguishes them from the bluets.
The body length of a blue-ringed dancer varies from 1.1 to 1.3 inches. The male's thorax is blue with black dorsal and shoulder stripes. The abdomen is black with narrow blue rings and a blue tip. The wings may have an amber tint. The eyes have blue eyespots. The female is a dull brownish, similar to other female dancers.
The blue-ringed dancer is widespread throughout United States, but not all the way to northernmost states in central and western regions. They are usually found at slow, vegetated small and large streams and rivers, lakes, and ditches. We are at the northermost part of its range in Wisconsin, and it could occur in our southern counties.
Throughout the range, the flight season may be from June to August.