23 Nov
Late Willow Emeralds

Late Willow Emeralds

By Adrian Parr:


The Willow Emerald Damselfly (pictured above) – a recent colonist to Britain – is a late season species, and is typically the last damselfly to be seen on the wing each year. This year, the benign autumn has resulted in a number of unusually late sightings, with reports even from Bedfordshire on 21 November and both Kent and Hertfordshire on 22 November. These are the latest-ever sightings in the UK, by over a week. If the weather continues to hold, it will be interesting to see if any more reports are received; in the Netherlands the latest date is apparently 26 November, not far off a December record for a damselfly! So get out there and look – and don’t forget that the species can still be recorded from its characteristic egg scar tracts (pictured below), even when adults have finally finished flying.


Goat Willow and Crack Willow
The scars left behind on Goat Willow (left) and Crack Willow (right) by Willow Emerald Damselfly egg laying behaviour. The scars differ in appearance depending on the tree species used.


Find out more about our recording project to track the spread of the Willow Emerald Damselfly here.





Header image: Male Willow Emerald Damselfly by Marc Heath