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Family LESTIDAE - Reedings

The damselfly in this family has narrow wings and slender body, rests with wings closed. We found only one species of this family in Brisbane.

Wandering Ringtail - Austrolestes leda

This page contains information and pictures about Common Ringtail Damselflies that we found in the Brisbane area, Queensland, Australia.
 
Mating pair, body length 40mm
Matured male Ringtail Damselflies are blue in colour with black bands. The young males are in pale blue colour. When it become older and ready for mating, it will turn into mature male blue colour. 
 
The mature female Common Ringtails are pale brown to pale blue in colours. 
 
They are not common on large waters, we usually found them near slow running creek. We sometimes found them hunting in bush far away from waters. Ringtail Damselflies can be found even in a winter sunny day in Brisbane. 

Young Male

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Next to this young male, their were a large group of midgets flying around. The damselfly flied to the midgets and flied back to the resting point many times when we taking those pictures. One in a few trips, the damselfly caught a small midget.
 

Mature Male

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Notice the blue "tail-light" tip of the abdomen - hence their common name Ringtail.
 
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The mature males come back to waters and waiting for the females.
 
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Female

Females looked similar to male, except they do not have the ring at the abdomen tip. 
 
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Body length 35mm
 
We took the female pictures in early summer on the hill top of White Hill in Brisbane where was quite far away from any water. The female damselfly was camouflaged as part of the tip of the stem.  
 
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Also found near a dry creek bed in Karawatha Forest on Nov 2007. 
 
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Mature females have some pale blue colour. They will return to the waters to mate and lay eggs. As you may expected, it is not easy to found a matured female alone near waters. Those matured females will be accomplished by males, as shown in this page below.
 

Mating

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The couple is 'in tandem position'. 
 

Lay Eggs

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Female laying eggs with male in tandem.  
 
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We have more information about dragonfly and damselfly reproduction in this page
 

Reference:
1. The Australian Dragonflies - CSIRO, Watson, Theisinger & Abbey,1991, p152.
2. A Field Guide to Dragonflies of South East Queensland - Ric Nattrass, 2006, p20.
3. The Complete Field Guide to Dragonflies of Australia - CSIRO, GŁnther Theischinger and John Hawking, 2006, p36. 

 
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Last updated: May 25, 2013.