Pale Damselfly with obvious broad pale legs.

Male: Pale blue with black markings.

Female: Cream with black markings.


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Species GroupDamselflies
Scientific NamePlatycnemis pennipes
Status & Distribution

Not found in Scotland, or north of the Humber in England; has a south-westerly distribution in Wales. Overall the species has increased in occupancy since 1970; however, it also appears to have been lost from some of its historic strongholds in England.


Mainly found along slow-flowing lowland streams and rivers, sometimes on canals or ponds.

Flight PeriodWhite-legged Damselfly
Adult Identification
  • Length: 36mm
  • Fine black markings.
  • Obvious broad pale legs.
  • Pale brown pterostigma (wing spots).
  • Broad black ante-humeral stripes on the back of the thorax, a pale line down the middle and narrow, pale stripes on either side.
  • Male: Pale blue colour
  • Female: Cream colour with a green-yellow tinge.
  • Immature adults: Cream colour with a brown-orange tinge.
Larval Information

Hind margins of the head are distinctly angular.

Obvious banding patterns on the legs.

Blotchy caudal lamellae that terminate in a long filament.

Similar Species

May be confused with other blue and black species of Damselfly.

White-legged Damselfly can be distinguished by itd:

  • Pale colouration.
  • Fine black markings.
  • Pale pterostigma (wing spots).