Lestes sponsa Lestidae Emerald Damselfly

Biology male female Irish distribution

Lestes sponsa

Widespread and common. Adults can be seen from mid June to late September. This can be a locally abundant species favouring acid ponds and small lakes, but avoiding very exposed and upland sites. It is the last species of damselfly to emerge each year in mid to late June.

The Emerald Damselfly is similar to the Scarce Emerald Damselfly Lestes dryas. Males of both species are emerald green and as they mature develop a powdery blue pruinescence on the thorax, abdominal segments 1 and 2 and on the apex of the abdomen. The pruinescence can sometimes obscure the spots on segment 2 which are teardrop-shaped in the Emerald Damselfly and rectangular in the Scarce Emerald. The inferior anal appendages are straight in the Emerald and broad and curved inwards in the Scarce Emerald.


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Nelson, B., Thompson, R. & Morrow, C., 2000 (May 8). [In] DragonflyIreland http://www.ulstermuseum.org.uk/dragonflyireland/

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