Willow Emerald Watch 2022 Results
The BDS has been tracking the spread of the Willow Emerald Damselfly across England since 2015. You can help by keeping an eye out for adults in late summer-autumn, as well as their egg laying scars in the bark on bankside trees; learn how to take part here.
Adrian Parr, project manager, summaries the results of 2022. . .
A large number of new sites for Willow Emerald Damselfly were discovered during 2022, the species’ rate of range expansion having, if anything, accelerated over recent years. As well as sightings of adults, searches for the characteristic oviposition scar tracts during the autumn and winter months have also proved fruitful in detecting the species. The major find of the year must surely be the discovery of an individual at Gosforth, Newcastle upon Tyne, during October; this is by some distance the most northerly record for Britain. Considerable consolidation of populations in the Yorkshire area also took place. Other significant finds include sightings from Burnley and the Crewe area in the northwest, Spetchley (Worcester) in the west and Trowbridge in the southwest. At present there are no records for Wales, but these may perhaps come in the very near future. Considering that Willow Emeralds have only been established in Britain for 15 years, the extent of the country that they now occupy is impressive. There is currently no sign of their range expansion slowing, and it will be of considerable interest to see whether they eventually reach Scotland. Thanks go to all those people who submitted records.