The Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly in Arkansas

Venturing along the serene trails near the Ouachita National Forest in Arkansas, my lens focused on a captivating sight: the Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly (Calopteryx Maculata), a delicate creature with a story as intriguing as its appearance. Every year, I’m drawn to this enchanting spring-fed stream, where these damselflies grace us with their presence.

Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly
Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly

Arkansas is home to this striking species of damselfly, which holds a distinct place in the Odonata order due to its striking blend of black and iridescent green hues. As a wildlife photographer based in the heart of this region, I find immense pleasure in unveiling the beauty of creatures like the Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly, allowing nature enthusiasts to relish its magnificence.

The Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly’s habitat preference is just as fascinating as its appearance. You can spot them near the babbling streams, rivers, and other water bodies of Arkansas. With wings spanning up to 2 inches, they stand as one of the more sizeable damselflies within the area. The allure of these creatures extends beyond their size, as their iridescent wings play with the angles of light, producing an entrancing shimmer that delights the eyes of those who behold them.

In addition to their visual charm, Ebony Jewelwing Damselflies fulfill a crucial role within the ecosystem of Arkansas. By diligently feasting on tiny insects such as mosquitoes, flies, and other airborne minuscule creatures, they contribute to maintaining balanced insect populations. This, in turn, provides sustenance for birds and other predators that share their habitat.

Preservation of their habitat is a pivotal aspect of ensuring the continued existence of these captivating creatures. The health of Arkansas’ water bodies—streams, rivers, and springs—requires safeguarding against pollution and the invasion of non-native species. By doing so, we collectively pledge our dedication to securing the future of the Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly, enabling generations to come to admire and appreciate their remarkable presence.

In conclusion, the Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly stands as a testament to the wonders of Arkansas’ diverse wildlife. With its mesmerizing interplay of colors and essential role within the ecosystem, it commands our admiration and respect. As we embark on the journey of capturing these fleeting moments through the lens, let us also embark on a journey of conservation, pledging to preserve the habitats that sustain the Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly’s delicate existence.

Gear Used:

  • Camera: Fujifilm X-T3
  • Lens: Canon EF 100-400 mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS II USM (attached with a Fringer EF-FX Pro)


I was hand-holding my camera and lens to photograph this Damselfly.

  • Location: Near The Ouachita National Forest (Arkansas)
  • Date Taken: August 8, 2020
  • Aperture Priority
  • Aperture: f5.6
  • Shutter speed: 1/1300 sec. (as determined by the camera)
  • ISO: 800
  • Exposure Compensation: 0
  • Focal Length: 400 mm

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