Large Red Damselfly

Pyrrhosoma nymphula


Over all length 33 - 36mm. A fairly robust damselfly, which is one of the earliest to emerge each spring. The males are mainly red and the females have more black on them. There are three types of female with varying amounts of black markings on their abdomens and one, the blackest, has yellow stripes on the thorax instead of red.


Ponds and ditches are attractive to this species and, away from water, they may be found foraging or basking along hedgerows.

Status and distribution

This is an uncommon insect at the lagoons but one or two individuals turn up most years, but they do not breed. It is common and widespread throughout most of Britain and Ireland.

Best time to see

Late May to early July.