The Red-Veined Darter (Sympetrum fonscolombii) is an insect in the Libelludlidae family of dragonflies. It is also known as the Nomad Darter.
The male Red-Veined Darter has a deep-red abdomen with a red-brown thorax. Its eyes are brown above and blue-green below. Its wings have red veins and the base of its hind-wings (back wings) is yellow. The female is similar, but her abdomen is yellow-brown with two black lines along each side. Her wings have yellow veins. Both the male and female have black legs with some yellow markings.
It grows to about 4 centimetres (1.5 inches) long.
The Red-Veined Darter is widespread and common throughout central and southern Europe, the Mediterranean, North Africa, Middle East, and Asia. In Europe, it is resident, but sometimes it migrates north.
It breeds in a wide range of habitats, including marshes, lakes, and rivers. It is seen throughout the year in the Mediterranean, but it is mostly seen from May to October in the Northern Hemisphere.
They mate over open water, such as a lake or pond. The female dips her abdomen in the water to lay her eggs. The eggs hatch into larvae within a few months. The juvenile Red-Veined Darters look yellowish like their mother, but with a little bit of red and a single line along each side of their abdomen.
Location of photographs: Rueil-Malmaison, France
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM