Definition of damselfly in US English:

damselfly

nounPlural damselflies

  • A slender insect related to the dragonflies, having weak flight and typically resting with the wings folded back along the body.

    Suborder Zygoptera, order Odonata: several families

    • ‘A blue damselfly lurked, wings swept back, then flashed out to hawk the beck.’
    • ‘Once home to 26 species of native damselflies, Hawaii's islands have lost many of these bejeweled creatures to the mosquito fish, introduced in 1905 to eat mosquito larvae.’
    • ‘The park was transformed from wasteland in 1997 and is home to a fascinating array of wildlife including frogs, toads, newts, dragonflies, damselflies, butterflies and birds.’
    • ‘Dragonflies and damselflies begin their lives as nymphs, living underwater for a year of more.’
    • ‘The two other lestinoid damselflies are recent ‘derived’ Lestidae.’
    • ‘Five species of the damselfly genus Lestes live in British Columbia, Canada, and of these, Lestes forcipatus Rambur and L. disjunctus Selys are the most similar and most difficult to separate morphologically.’
    • ‘Cascade damselflies are found only at a few isolated waterfalls in Costa Rica and Panama and display an extraordinary ability to fly through powerful cascades, seen on film for the first time.’
    • ‘A grasshopper materialized, then several hornets, two shiny black wasps, a drab brown damselfly, and a large azure-blue dragonfly.’
    • ‘Female species of dragonflies and damselflies will allow males to mate with them only when they see that he has a suitable egg-laying territory.’
    • ‘The wing bases tend to be very slender, as in damselflies (Odonata, Zygoptera).’
    • ‘The reserve is already home to several species of dragonfly, damselflies and is used by wading birds, all of which are expected to benefit from the new pond.’
    • ‘Zimmerman noted the habit of the damselfly Ischnura aurora to fly straight up and out of sight immediately after hatching as a likely reason for the wide distribution of the species across Oceania.’
    • ‘In addition, the park is buzzing with insect life and is regionally important for the high numbers of dragonflies and damselflies.’
    • ‘In the Japanese damselfly, Mnais costalis, there is a high degree of female monopolization and females often oviposit on territories in tight aggregated clumps.’
    • ‘Disguises used by female damselflies to avoid unwanted sexual advances can cause males to seek out their own sex, a new study suggests.’
    • ‘It is also hoped that the wet grasslands and shallow riverside verges will benefit water voles, dragon and damselflies, frogs and toads and different types of newts.’
    • ‘Swimming is an effective evasive tactic against dragonflies, which can move at similar speeds compared to damselflies, but not against fish, which can move at much greater speeds than damselflies.’
    • ‘She pointed out damselfly larva, water beetles, tadpoles, backswimmers, dragon fly larva and snails as they circled around in our tiny sample of the marsh.’
    • ‘The Odonata, the order to which damselflies and dragonflies belong, play a very important ecological and economic role for human beings.’
    • ‘Longhorn leaf beetles do not have gills and therefore cannot extract oxygen directly from the water, as damselfly and dragonfly larvae do.’

Pronunciation

damselfly

/ˈdæmzəlˌflaɪ//ˈdamzəlˌflī/