Dark metallic Dragonfly.

Male: obviously waisted abdomen.

Female: broader abdomen that’s more parallel sided.




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Where to See

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Latin NameSomatochlora arctica

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.


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.

Similar Species

Downy Emerald

  • hairier thorax

Brilliant Emerald

  • brighter metallic colouration



Northern Emerald Management Profile

Species GroupDragonflies
Identification Notes
  • 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.
Flight PeriodNorthern Emerald
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.