The blue-fronted dancer, Argia apicalis Say (Odonata: Coenagrionidae), is an ecologically vagile species inhabiting both pond and stream environments of the eastern United States. Variation in color pattern in A. apicalis occurs between a southeastern United States morph and a south Florida morph. Southeastern populations often are described as “typical” with a predominantly bright blue pterothorax and narrow black humeral stripe, whereas the southern Florida populations are “atypical,” with a bright blue pterothorax and larger, wider black humeral stripes. Variability in color pattern has caused some researchers to question the true identity of the Florida morph. This study used color pattern and mitochondrial cytochromeb sequences to test the species identity of the 2 A. apicalis geographical color morphs. Mitochondrial cytochrome-b gene sequences showed that there is a single haplotype, showing no divergence between individuals, populations, or regions. This study is the first to test if color pattern variation is correlated with molecular characters within this species.
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Vol. 99 • No. 3