Nevada Gets Its Own Insect

There’s been a move afoot by school children and Nevada’s Senate, refreshingly working in harmony, to select Nevada’s state insect.  Care to hazard a guess on the winner?  

Some said the winner would be the blood-sucking mosquito, having a double entendre:  a symbol for our economy and to commemorate the growing number of West Nile virus cases stemming from the stagnant pools of our many foreclosed homes.  Wrong. 

Some said the bedbug would be a better symbol, keeping with the “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas,” advertising slogan.  Wrong again.

 Sen. John Lee, D-North Las Vegas, piped up and alternatively suggested the barfly or “the lobbyist.”  Nope. damselfly

No, the winning flitting critter is the . . . damselfly, which is found in all parts of Nevada, resembling a dragonfly.  Male vivid dancer damselflies are bright blue and females are tan.   No telling what damsel colors would morph into when in distress.  

And, in tune with Nevada’s kitschy status, no other state has the damselfly as their official state insect.   

The project – Nevada Senate bill SB166 – was the brainchild of sponsors Sen. Joyce Woodhouse, D-Henderson, and Assemblyman Lynn Stewart, R-Henderson, working with fourth-grade educators throughout Nevada. 

A group of educators and scientists picked the damselfly earlier this month, as recommended by fourth-graders at Beatty Elementary School in Las Vegas, then there was a 7-0 ratifying vote, without filibustering, from the Nevada Senate Government Affairs Committee.  The Beatty entry was selected from more than 70 nominations and essays send in by 57 fourth-grade classes across Nevada. 

Now, only eight states have no official insect to call their own.

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