Dark metallic Dragonfly.

Male: obviously waisted abdomen.

Female: broader abdomen that’s more parallel sided.




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Species GroupDragonflies
Scientific NameSomatochlora arctica
Status & Distribution

Listed as Near Threatened in the British Odonata Red List 2008.

Restricted to north-west Scotland, where its known range has increased since about 1990.


Breeds in moorland bogs and pools, often with much Sphagnum.

Adults patrol wet meadows and open areas in pine woods or on moors with scattered trees.


Flight PeriodNorthern Emerald
Adult Identification
  • Length: 50mm
  • Bright green eyes.
  • Metallic bronze-green abdomen.
  • Male: waisted abdomen with calliper-like appendages at the end.
  • Female: broader abdomen and a short vulvar scale.
Larval Information

Emerald Dragonfly larvae have a squat spider-like body-shape similar to Chaser, Skimmers and Darters, but significantly longer back legs.

Smallest Emerald Dragonfly larvae: 17-20 mm.

Very hairy.


Northern Emerald Management Profile

Similar Species

Downy Emerald

  • hairier thorax

Brilliant Emerald

  • brighter metallic colouration