You are here

Dragonflies

Click the pic!

To aid users of mobile devices as well as those with a mouse or laptop finger pad this site uses a simple image-based menu system. Virtually every picture you see (images and photos) are links to more information arranged in a sort of top-down structure. See an image, click or tap on it to open a new page.

Group: 
Dragons & Damsels

Dragonflies tend be much stockier than damselflies, have a stronger flight and rest with their wings open

The information about this group of species has been organised into reports, charts, maps and photos. Click a pic below to see the detail:

Distribution Map Some Charts Some Photographs Sites List Records List Original Tweets Guidance Notes

Hairy Dragonfly

Brachytron pratense
Click species photo for details of this species:

A scarce dragonfly found mainly in east Dorset.


 

 

Photo by:
Ian Andrews

Common Hawker

Aeshna juncea
Click species photo for details of this species:

Although called the common hawker it is scarce in Dorset.


 

 

Migrant Hawker

Aeshna mixta
Click species photo for details of this species:

An occasional species of dragonfly in Dorset; blue/brown in colour.


Southern Hawker

Aeshna cyanea
Click species photo for details of this species:

The most common hawker dragonfly in Dorset; a large, colourful and imposing insect.


 

Brown Hawker

Aeshna grandis
Click species photo for details of this species:

Common in Britain but is less so in the south west and is not widely distributed in Dorset. It can be found to the east of the county.


 

Emperor Dragonfly

Anax imperator
Click species photo for details of this species:

Our biggest dragonfly, predominantly blue in colour and usually seen near fresh water; pond, lake, river, gravel pit or canal.


 

Lesser Emperor Dragonfly

Anax parthenope
Click species photo for details of this species:

A continental species that has been gradually colonising Britain since the 1990'2.


 

 

Photo by:
Peter Orchard

Golden-ringed Dragonfly

Cordulegaster boltonii
Click species photo for details of this species:

A very distinctive dragonfly and one that cannot really be mistaken for anything else. As it says on the label, it is golden-ringed!


 

Downy Emerald

Cordulia linaenea
Click species photo for details of this species:

An uncommon species of heathland pools and very difficult to photograph as it rarely rests from its constant territorial patrol.


 

Photo by:
Ian Andrews

Four-spotted Chaser

Libellula quadrimaculata
Click species photo for details of this species:

A common dragonfly of heathland ponds and bogs, also be found on ponds and lakes that have a degree of acidity, are fairly shallow and with extensive vegetation.


 

Broad Bodied Chaser

Libellula depressa
Click species photo for details of this species:

One of the earliest dragonflies to appear and can be seen around ponds everywhere, frequently newly formed or newly cleared ponds.


 

Scarce Chaser

Libellula fulva
Click species photo for details of this species:

The scarce chaser is scarce in Dorset, so scarce in fact I have yet to find one to photograph!


 

Black-tailed Skimmer

Orthetrum cancellatum
Click species photo for details of this species:

The male is a bright blue with a much darker tail; frequent around areas of open water from gravel pits to wet bog. 


 

Keeled Skimmer

Orthetrum coerulescens
Click species photo for details of this species:

A nationally scarce dragonfly but one that is often abundant around wet areas of Dorset heathland


 

Black Darter

Sympetrum danae
Click species photo for details of this species:

A dragonfly of the Dorset heath favouring acidic boggy waters. It can be seen flying from July through until October.


 

Common Darter

Sympetrum striolatum
Click species photo for details of this species:

The most common of the darter species here in Dorset, it is also probably the most common species of dragonfly.


 

Ruddy Darter

Sympetrum sanguineum
Click species photo for details of this species:

A scarce heathland species easily confused with the common darter.


 

Red-veined Darter

Sympetrum fonscolombii
Click species photo for details of this species:

Primarily a migrant species but beginning to colonise southern England.


 

 

Photo by:
Peter Orchard

Vagrant Emporer

Hemianax ephippiger
Click species photo for details of this species:

A rare migrant dragonfly from arid southern climes but known to travel long distances.


 

 

Photo by:
Peter Orchard

Scarlet Darter

Crocothemis erythtaea
Click species photo for details of this species:

A southern European species known to be expanding its range northwards but rarely recorded in the United Kingdom.


 

 

Photo by:
Peter Orchard