Latest Sightings

Recent items of hot news about Odonata are published here frequently. The most recently received items of news are at the top of the list. Each entry has the date, county and observer's initials (with a link to the observer's website where appropriate). Check back here frequently for information about the progress of the dragonfly season.

Please note that if you want to submit your sighting as a record to the British Dragonfly Society Recording Scheme you will have to create a new record for each species seen on the online recording page of the BDS website. 'Latest Sightings' have for many years been part of the BDS website and are unmoderated, meaning that they are not checked for accuracy before appearing. Online recording is an independent system. Please enter your sightings in both places.

To add new sightings to this page, click here.

By logging your sightings here you agree to the BDS storing the details you enter and that you may be contacted by a County Dragonfly Recorder or by the Records Officer if they are of particular interest.

See also Sightings from Previous years and Archived sightings from long-past years.

  • 29th May 2018
    Essex
    DFC
    Foxearth Meadows

    10 species today including a single White-legged Damselfly and at least two or three Hairy Dragonflies. Also Large Red Damsel, Red-eyed Damsel, Banded Demoiselle, Azure, Blue-tailed and Common Blue Damsel, Four-spotted Chaser and one Black-tailed Skimmer.

  • 28th May 2018
    Cambridgeshire
    SM
    Paxton Pits

    Norfolk Hawker 7 flying around hayling lake this afternoon,  6 immature Scarce Chaser and 1 immature Black-tailed Skimmer, good numbers of Banded Demoiselles, Common Blues, Azure, Variable, Blue-tailed, Red-eyed Damselflys, 8 Four-spotted Chasers around paxton pits

  • 28th May 2018
    VC11 South Hampshire
    PR
    Common Emerald and Small Red

    At Town Common (Christchurch) today there were 6 teneral Common Emerald, 4 teneral Small Red and a couple dozen Scarce Chaser among the heath. Any photos will appear on the blog as per usual

  • 28th May 2018
    Suffolk
    JPH
    First Suffolk Norfolk Hawkers?

    North Cove reserve near Beccles - ca. 6 A. isosceles on the wing this pm. Wish they wouldn't perch low down in grass/sedges!

  • 28th May 2018
    Kent
    MH
    Nethergong Campsite

    An early morning visit to Nethergong produced 2 Norfolk Hawker, 2 Hairy Dragonfly and a few Variable, Azure and Blue tailed Damselfly.

  • 28th May 2018
    Suffolk
    SB
    River Stour Suffolk/Essex

    Afternoon of 28 May in bright sunlight and growing heat, I walked the stretch of the River Stour from Dedham to the large pool a mile or so west of Stratford St Mary. No White-legged Damselflies in what was a known stronghold west of Stratford St Mary, but 8 Hairy Dragonfly and 4 Scarce Chaser are species I wouldn't have expected a few years back. Counted 155 Banded Demoiselle and 60 Large Red-eyed Damselfly: on the outward trip the latter were flying around and not doing their usual thing of resting on lily-pads, but by the return journey they were resting in this manner. Also saw Common Blue and Azure Damselflies, Large Red and Blue-tailed Damselflies in numbers, Black-tailed Skimmer and two Emperors. By contrast, very few butterflies (only Small White, Red Admiral, Small Tortoiseshell). First dragonfly trip of the year - previously just birding and watching out unsuccessfully for dragonflies. Not bad.

  • 28th May 2018
    Highland
    MM
    Bridge of Grudie , Loch Marie

    25c . Light breeze. 4 northern emerald , 1 azure hawker , lots of white faced and black darters , 6 common blue damselfly , few large red damselfly , 1 golden ringed dragonfly , lot and lots 4 spotted chaser.

  • 28th May 2018
    Somerset
    MH
    Shapwick NNR

    Good numbers of dragonflies and damsellies. Thousands of Four spotted Chasers, Azure, Red eyed, Blue tailed and Variable damselflies, 100+ Hairy dragonflies, 30+ Emperor dragonflies, 20+ Scare Chaser and 10+ Banded demoiselle

     

  • 28th May 2018
    Devon
    PH
    Little Bradley Ponds and Lower Bruckland

    Four Downy Emeralds and one Hairy dragonfly at the west pond at Little Bradley DWT reserve. A Scarce chaser, an Emperor and two Four-spotted chasers at the first of the round ponds, a couple of hundred yards to the west of the entrance at Lower Bruckland. 

  • 28th May 2018
    Oxfordshire
    SJD
    No sign of clubtails at Goring

    I visited the railway viaduct at Goring to look for common clubtails, but there was nothing to suggest any had emerged in the last few days. I did see some white-legged and red-eyed damselflies, as well as banded demoiselles in the small nature reserve nearby.  

  • 27th May 2018
    Devon
    DS
    Devon Group meeting at Stover

    An overnight thunderstorm and a cool, cloudy morning were not conducive to much dragonfly activity during the morning for the first Devon Group meeting of the year at Stover Country Park. Nevertheless, 15 of us gathered and walked around the lake during the morning. We saw just a few common damselflies until hazy sunshine around midday, although a Hairy Dragonfly exuvia was a good find. The sunshine helped 10 or more Red-eyed Damselflies out onto pondweeds on one of the surrounding ponds, where our collective eyes found 4 more Hairy exuviae and emerging Four-spotted Chasers. Top find was a Downy Emerald exuvia and to boot a female Downy appeared and began egg-laying. After lunch some of us went on to nearby Ventiford Ponds, where additional species included Beautiful Demoiselle, emerging Black-tailed Skimmers and a recently-emerged Common Darter. It was excellent also to see a few Red-eyed Damselflies and egg-laying Hairy Dragonfly and Emperor. Other notable finds included Dingy Skipper, Large Skipper, Common Blue Butterflies and Mother Shipton moth, while 6 Mandarin Ducks, a Treecreeper and a family of Nuthatches provided other interest.

  • 27th May 2018
    West Sussex
    OJF
    Common Club-tails along the River Rother

    Spent a very successful few hours looking for Club-tails along the River Rother, downstream of the road bridge at Lower Fittleworth. I covered only about half a mile of river, but had at least 20 individuals, nearly all males, with the exception of 3 females all found perched in vegetation near the river. Other species seen include a single immature male Scarce Chaser, a few Broad-bodied Chasers, & a plentiful supply of Banded Demoiselles, Large Red Damselflies, & a few Azure Damselfly.

  • 27th May 2018
    Suffolk
    NO
    Large White-faced Darter in Suffolk

    A male Large White-faced Darter Leucorrhinia pectoralis was seen at Landguard in Suffolk on the afternoon of 27 May; this is the fourth UK record. Amazingly, one was also seen at Landguard back in 2012. Could this species be becoming a potential colonist?

  • 27th May 2018
    Norfolk
    SRo
    Strumpshaw Fen & How Hill.

    A visit yesterday to these two sites,saw the following being seen in breezy,but sunny conditions: 

    Strumpshaw Fen: 9 Scarce Chaser; 4 Norfolk Hawker; 10 Four-spot Chaser

    How Hill: 16+ Norfolk Hawker,including 9 together in one meadow.At least 4 were new emergencies,with glossy wings.; 5 Scarce Chaser; 10 Four-spot Chaser; 10 Hairy Dragonfly; 20 Variable Damselfly.

  • 27th May 2018
    VC11 South Hampshire
    PR
    Small Red, Scarce Blue-tailed and Golden-Ringed

    Today at Latchmore there were a dozen  Scarce Blue-tailed, 50+ Southern and one teneral Small Red along with 6 Keeled Skimmer and one male Golden-ringed among thew heath

  • 27th May 2018
    Kent
    MH
    Westbere Lakes

    A few hours at Westbere Lakes early afternoon produced 17 Scarce Chaser, 14 Hairy Dragonfly, 1 Emperor Dragonfly, 1 Black tailed Skimmer, 1 Norfolk Hawker, c60 Banded Demoiselle, 100's of Variable, Azure and Bluetailed Damselfly and c20 Red eyed Damselfly. I then moved on to Nethergong where I noted 1 Norfolk Hawker, 2 Broad bodied Chaser and 4 Hairy Dragonfly. 

  • 27th May 2018
    Somerset
    MH
    Lesser Emperor

    Male seen in area of rhynes on western edge of Glastonbury

  • 26th May 2018
    Cambridgeshire
    SM
    Norfolk Hawker

    A male Norfolk Hawker flying around north west corner of Hayling lake at Paxton Pits Cambridgeshire

  • 26th May 2018
    Essex
    AC
    Vange Marsh

    Hairy dragonfly-5 at least. One caught & eaten by a pied wagtail. Four spotted chaser- 9 at least. Including two mating pairs. One female seen egg laying, guarded by the male. Red eyed damsefly-3. Common blue damselfly- many.

  • 26th May 2018
    SURREY
    THURSLEY SURREY

    Today saw a teneral male and teneral female Brilliant Emerald with their exuvia plus an ealier vacated exuvia. Other exuvia seen and examined at home  were 7- Downy Emerald, 1- Broad-bodied Chaser, 1- Four-spotted chaser and a female Hairy. Having visited Thursley for many years, this is only the second year that we have seen evidence of Hairy dragonflies breeding at Thursley.

  • 26th May 2018
    Hampshire
    GMD
    Ansells Farm sightings

    Despite a pesky breeze, a good variety of Dragons enjoying themselves on the wing at Ansells Farm nature resrve in NE Hampshire. 50+ Four spotted chasers were joined by 20+ Broad-bodied, many dozens of Large Red pairs along with Common,Azure and Blue-Tailed Damsels. Also singles of Hairy, Downey, Emperor and a teneral Common Darter. Work here over the past few years certainly paying dividends.

  • 26th May 2018
    Kent
    Sevenoaks Wildfowl Reserve, Kent

    A downy emerald patrolled the margins of a small lake to the west of North Lake. Also many Azure Damsels and a few red-eyed, blue-tailed and large red Damsels.  A broad bodied chaser too. 

  • 26th May 2018
    Cambridgeshire
    SFL
    RSPB Fen Drayton - Emperor Dragonflies

    Emperor Dragonflies have emerged on the Reserve and 3 recorded. Red-eyed Damselfly (1000), Common Blue damselfly (1000+), Blue tailed damselfly (150), Azure and Variable damselfly (100 each), Banded Demoiselles (70), Hairy Dragonfly (6), Four Spotted Chaser (5), Black tailed Skimmer (1), Scarce Chaser (1)

  • 26th May 2018
    Essex
    SRJ
    Marks Hall Estate, Marks Tey, Essex

    1000's Azures, 10+ Blue tailed, 1 Male banded Demoiselle, 100+ Large Reds, 50+ Red Eyed (many damsels in tandem orCoP or ovipositing), 20+ Four Spotted Chasers, 2 Emperor on the wing, 3f + 1m Broad bodied Chasers, 6 Hairy.

  • 26th May 2018
    East Sussex
    TJW
    White-legged Damselfly at Rowland Wood

    It was good to see several White-legged Damselfly today at Rowland Wood. Also seen Hairy Dragonfly and Four-spotted Chasers.

  • 26th May 2018
    Cumbria
    DH
    Downy Emerald

     10 Downy Emeralds at High Dam, Finsthwaite, South Cumbria. As far as I am aware they may constitute a new site record?

  • 26th May 2018
    Norfolk
    JM
    Lestes dryas Norfolk

    Several freshly emerged female Scarce Emeralds taking maiden flights. North Norfolk. Two days earlier than last year.

  • 25th May 2018
    Kent
    MH
    Norfolk Hawker emerging in east Kent

    I have returned a number of times in the last week of an evening at Grove Ferry and was rewarded last night with finding a Norfolk Hawker exuviae and even better, a female Norfolk Hawker emerging. After a bit of panic, I was able to photograph most of the emergence. Photos on my blog. 

  • 25th May 2018
    Essex
    AC
    Langdon Hills

    Emperor-1 EWT Dunton Plotlands. In flight above a meadow.

  • 24th May 2018
    Essex
    SRJ
    Sth Hanningfield Reservoir EWT (small pond)

    3m + 4f Broad bodied Chasers (continually forming Mating wheels and ovipositing), 6 Four spotted chasers, 1 Hairy, 50+ Azure many in tandem, CoP and ovipositing, 6 Blue tailed,

  • 23rd May 2018
    Devon
    DS
    Bovey Basin highlights

    Looked at three Bovey Basin sites today. At Little Bradley Ponds there were at least 5 Downy Emeralds around the 'new' (western) pond, plus 3 exuviae in Greater Tussock-sedge tussocks around the original pond (they're relatively easy to see on the sedge, but looking on the surrounding willows is a needle-in-haystack job!). The 'new' pond also had 2 Hairy Dragonflies and 5 Four-spotted Chasers, but surprisingly few Large Red and Azure Damselflies. Notable on the old pond was a single Red-eyed Damselfly. 5 common species were seen at Bovey Heath, then at Stover Country Park there were c12 Hairy D's, c25 (well-scattered) Red-eyed Damselflies and masses of Azures and Large Reds amongst other expected species, but sadly no Downy Emeralds. We'll be looking hard for this species on Sunday's BDS meeting there! Total of 11 species not bad for the time of year.

  • 23rd May 2018
    Berkshire
    MHT
    Today at Fobney Island

    Clouds of Beautiful Demoiselles along the path to the south of Fobney Island (near Reading) today. I counted 114 - they outnumbered the Banded Demoiselles by more than 4:1. Also Azure Damselflies outnumbered the Common Blues by 8:1. My first Black-tailed Skimmer of the year landed briefly on the path.

    The lake and pond on the island were very productive with at least 12 Broad-bodied Chasers, 5 Hairy Dragonfly and 5 Four-spotted Chasers. Again the Azures outnumbered the Common Blues, but only just. First Emperor of the year patrolling the lake.

  • 23rd May 2018
    Bedfordshire
    REM
    Willington-Octagon Farm Complex

    Several teneral/immature Black-tailed skimmers were seen along with Hairy dragonfly (one pair in cop) and Four-spotted chaser. 100+ Azure damselfly and good numbers of Common blue damselfly were present, along with a handful of Blue-tailed and Red-eyed damselfly. 20+ Banded demoiselle near the river.

  • 23rd May 2018
    Hampshire (but VC8 South Wiltshire)
    pdw
    Common Darter

    A teneral male Common Darter came off Cadnam Common pond this afternoon. My 2nd earliest date for the species in Hampshire and a little unexpected after the cold late witer/early spring.

  • 23rd May 2018
    Somerset
    MH
    Red veined Darter

    Surperb male seen in meadows at Barrington Hill NNR

  • 22nd May 2018
    Warwickshire
    JSc
    Kingsbury Water Park

    Hundreds of damselflies around the southern section of Kingsbury Water Park. Rough totals were c300 Common Blue Damselfly (probably a massive underestimate), c50 Red-eyed Damselfly, c10 Blue-tailed Damselfly, 8 Banded Demoiselle (7m, 1f), 2 Four-spotted Chaser, 1 male Broad-bodied Chaser and 1 female Black-tailed Skimmer.

  • 22nd May 2018
    Bridgend
    rkl
    Common Blue Damselfly

    At Parc Slip Nature Reserve, Tondu South Wales,

  • 22nd May 2018
    Suffolk
    RM
    Suffolk

    I have just witnessed a mass emergence of Scarce Chasers. I saw 150 between Beccles and Geldeston along the River Waveney. Also a Norfolk Hawker which I haven’t seen along this stretch of river before

  • 22nd May 2018
    Kent
    MH
    Norfolk Hawker emerging in east Kent

    For the past week or so, I have been visiting a site in east Kent by torch / headtorch at night between 9- 10:30pm in the hope of finding and ultimately photographing a Norfolk Hawker emerging. The good news is that I have eventually found one and spent a few hours photographing the emergence. Not too sure how many times this has been photographed in the UK. Photos will appear on my blog in due course. 

  • 22nd May 2018
    Norfolk
    PFF
    Norfolk Hawker emergence at Filby

    At least 4 teneral Norfolk Hawkers were seen at Filby, from the paths from the car park, plus 5 Hairy Dragonflies and 10+ Four-spotted Chaser. Good numbers of Damselflies were around with Red-eyed, Common Blue, Blue-tailed, Variable and Large Red but very few (3) Azure Damselflies!

    Comma, Speckled Wood, Green-veined White, Orange-tip, Large White and Red Admiral butterflies and a queen Hornet were also of note.

  • 22nd May 2018
    Nottinghamshire
    PJR
    Black-tailed Skimmer, Nottinghamshire.

    First sighting of a Black-tailed Skimmer for me at Chainbridge nature reserve, Lound, Nottinghamshire. Lots of Banded Demaiselles, more males than females, along with a couple of Four-spotted Chasers and about 8 Hairy Hawkers. Sunny with temps of 22c and breezy.

  • 21st May 2018
    Surrey
    Bletchingley.

     Southern Hawker emerged successfully on Yellow Iris in our garden pond

  • 21st May 2018
    East Sussex
    JS
    Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly

    Seen by the side of our garden pond in Eastbourne, East Sussex. I have photos! [Suspect this was Beautiful demoiselle - Caleopteryx virgo - GHM]

  • 21st May 2018
    SURREY
    THURSLEY SSSI SURREY

    Todays short visit highlight was a recently emerged female Brilliant Emerald clinging to its exuvia. Other sightings were good numbers of Downy Emeralds, 4-Spotted Chasers, Red-eyed, Large Red and Common Blue Damselflies.

  • 21st May 2018
    Norfolk
    HRM
    Keeled skimmer southern end (ponds) of Holt lowes

    Teneral keeled skimmer this afternoon at Holt lowes also two male broad bodied chasers 

  • 21st May 2018
    Somerset
    DS
    Steart WWT survey

    Nine species were recorded in the first survey this year of freshwater areas of Steart WWT Reserve. Counts totalled 72 Hairy Dragonflies (including 1 emerging and 7 pairs in cop,), 41 Red-eyed Damselflies, 27 Four-spotted Chasers (many newly-emerged), 2 Black-tailed Skimmers (newly-emerged), plus 101 Azure, 3 Common Blue, 149 Blue-tailed, 2 Emperors and a fly-by Banded Demoiselle. Everything's late in the West Country compared with further east in England, so still hoping for Scarce Chasers there in coming days and weeks!

  • 21st May 2018
    East Sussex
    NCB
    Old Lodge Ashdown Forest East Sussex

    Common and Azure blue. Downy Emerald, Broad Bodied Chaser and an early female Keeled Skimmer.

  • 21st May 2018
    Essex
    SRJ
    River Chelmer at Boreham

    7 Hairy, 1 Four Spotted Chaser, 4 Blue tailed, 6 Large Red, 25+ Banded Demoiselle, 25+ Red Eyed

  • 21st May 2018
    Cumbria
    White-faced Darter and Downy Emerald

    10+ White-faced Darters seen at Foulshaw Moss (North side of the reserve amongst the trees) 

    Three Downy Emeralds seen at Barkbooth Lot and three more seen at Knipe Tarn (visible through fence from the roadside)

  • 20th May 2018
    Cambridgeshire
    HJV
    Fen Drayton Variables and others

    At least 310 Variable Damselflies across the reserve at Fen Drayton Lakes. Also Common Blue, Azure, Blue-tailed and Red-eyed Damselflies and Banded Demoiselle. At least 30 Azure was a decent count for the site, hundreds of Common Blue (will soon be thousands). 20+ Hairy Dragonflies, 3 Four-spotted Chasers.

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