Mosquito larvae are aquatic, with a large head and thorax and narrow, wormlike abdomen. They typically hang just below the water surface, breathing air through tubes at the end of the abdomen. When disturbed, they wriggle downward.
The slaty skimmer, Libellula incesta, has a body about 2 inches long. Young males and females have brown abdomens and a dark stripe running down the back. Each of the four wings has a dark spot on the outer leading edge.
Many animals and plants make up our aquatic ecosystems. This southern leopard frog is surrounded by several tiny bluish gray aquatic springtails that commonly swarm on the surface of the water. The frog is a predator, and the springtails are scavengers. Both are preyed upon by larger animals.
The spangled skimmer, Libellula cyanea, grows to nearly 2 inches long. Each of the 4 wings has a white spot beside a black spot on the outer leading edge. Females are dark brown with lengthwise yellow stripes, and darkish wingtips.
MDC protects and manages Missouri's fish, forest, and wildlife resources. We also facilitate your participation in resource-management activities, and we provide opportunities for you to use, enjoy and learn about nature. Read more about our mission.