Description

Large metallic damselfly with fluttering, butterfly-like wings.

Male: metallic blue body with broad dark blue-black spots across outer parts of wings.

Female: metallic green body with translucent pale green wings.

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Latin NameCalopteryx splendens
Habitat

Mainly found along slow-flowing lowland streams and rivers, particularly those with muddy bottoms.

Threats
  • Pollution.
  • Over-shading from tree growth.
  • Intensive dredging.
  • Removal of aquatic and bankside vegetation.
  • Over abstraction.

 

Status & Distribution

Common in most of England (south of the Humber), Wales and Ireland.

Similar Species

The Beautiful Demoiselle is the only other British damselfly with coloured wings but the males have fully coloured wings and the females have brown-tinged wings.

Beware! Internet searches tends to find related American species such as the Ebony Jewelwing (Calopteryx maculata), also known as the Black-winged Damselfly, but such species do not occur in Europe and have never been known to cross the Atlantic.

Management
  • Control sources of pollution run off.
  • Manage bankside tree growth.
Species GroupDamselflies
Identification Notes
  • Length: 45mm
  • Male: metallic blue body with broad dark blue-black spot across outer part of wing.
  • Female: metallic green body with translucent pale green wings.
Flight PeriodBanded Demoiselle
Larval Information

Demoiselle larvae have long bodies, short spikey caudal llamellae and long ‘horn-like’ antennae.

No obvious occupital tooth sticking out from behind the eyes.

Two pale bands on the caudal llamellae.

Only Beautiful Demoiselle are similar in appearance.

 

Similar Species