Red-eyed Damselfly (Erythromma najas)
Species
Red-eyed Damselfly (Erythromma najas). Male. Taken at Otmoor, Oxon on April 30th 2011. Approx 5x lifesize.
Male. Taken at Otmoor, Oxon on April 30th 2011.
(1/320th sec at f11. Approx 3x lifesize. Click image for larger version. © David Hastings)

Male. Taken at Thrupp Lake, Oxon on July 14th 2011.
(1/160th sec at f10. Approx 3x lifesize. © David Hastings)
Red-eyed Damselfly (Erythromma najas). Teneral male. Taken at Otmoor, Oxon on June 17th 2012. Approx 5x lifesize.
Teneral male. Taken at Otmoor, Oxon on June 17th 2012.
(1/320th sec at f14. Approx 3x lifesize. Click image for larger version. © David Hastings)

Description

Wing span: 38 - 48 mm; body length: 30 - 36 mm

A robust-looking damselfly with a dark greyish abdomen and a blue tail in the male. The eyes of the male are deep red and the thorax in both sexes is bronze black on top. The female has short, yellowish ante-humeral lines.

This species is mainly found in the southern half of England. It is absent from Wales, Scotland and Ireland.

Favoured breeding sites include larger ponds, lakes, canals, main drains and sluggish rivers. All feature floating vegetation such as water lilies.

Eggs are laid while in tandem into stems and leaves of floating plants. The larvae live amongst vegetation and emerge after one, or more usually two years. Adults are on the wing from May to August, with a peak in June.

Males are often found flying low over the water, or sitting on floating leaves, where they fight for strategically important positions near open water.

A locally common species.

Sightings

25-Aug-2018 : Standlake Common, Oxon (1f)
05-Aug-2018 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (4)
17-Jul-2018 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (14+)
10-Jul-2018 : Crookham Common, Berks (6)
21-Jun-2018 : Whelford Pools, Glos (10)
10-Jun-2018 : Barnwell Country Park, Northants (10+)
08-Jun-2018 : Barnwell Country Park, Northants (10+)
06-Jun-2018 : Otmoor, Oxon (1)
02-Jun-2018 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (3)
02-Jun-2018 : Standlake Common, Oxon (5)
18-May-2018 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (1)

14-Jun-2017 : Whelford Pools, Glos (2)
03-Jun-2017 : Abingdon, Oxon (8)
30-May-2017 : Otmoor, Oxon (2m)
21-May-2017 : Abingdon, Oxon (1m)

16-Jul-2016 : Crookham Common, Berks (10+)

12-Sep-2015 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (2)
21-Jun-2015 : Otmoor, Oxon (1)
13-Jun-2015 : Barton Fields, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
07-Jun-2015 : Goring Railway Bridge, Oxon (6)
01-Jun-2015 : Otmoor, Oxon (4)

16-Jun-2014 : Whelford Pools, Glos (2)
25-May-2014 : Otmoor, Oxon (4m)