Recent items of hot news about Odonata are published here frequently. The most recently received items of news are at the top of the list. Each entry has the date, county and observer's initials (with a link to the observer's website where appropriate). Check back here frequently for information about the progress of the dragonfly season.
Please note that if you want to submit your sighting as a record to the British Dragonfly Society Recording Scheme you will have to create a new record for each species seen on the online recording page of the BDS website. 'Latest Sightings' have for many years been part of the BDS website and are unmoderated, meaning that they are not checked for accuracy before appearing. Online recording is an independent system. Please enter your sightings in both places.
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By logging your sightings here you agree to the BDS storing the details you enter and that you may be contacted by a County Dragonfly Recorder or by the Records Officer if they are of particular interest.
See also Sightings from Previous years and Archived sightings from long-past years.
2 Willow emerald damselfly seen today along the river Stour, Sudbury by the mill hotel. Very surprised to find them in such cloudy and windy conditions. Also 4 Migrant hawker dragonflies seen over the wet grassland areas.
Female Southern Hawker and Migrant Hawker flying around the garden, before the wind and rain!
Last year I found a Willow Emerald Damselfly at Bolderemere on 25 August. I don't think anyone had reported one here before and I have not heard of any more sightings from Boldermere. So today, with the water level down an a new pair of wellies, I was able to get on the outside edge of the willows and had high hopes, but again only managed to find one Willow Emerald Damselfly. There must be a lot more here, but there was a stiff wind blowing, which hampered my searching. Seven each of Black and Ruddy but many Common Darters. Many Migrant Hawkers. The Car Parks now have Ticket Machines!
Sandhouse Lane NR (Heath and Reach) is one of five new sites for Willow Emerald this year in Bedfordshire. Only one male was seen there today (16 Sept) but a female was present on 30 August. Other species seen on 16 Sept: Ruddy Darter (several including one ovipositing pair, into moist mud - the pond is almost dried out), Common Darter and Migrant Hawker.
A visit to Nethergong from 10:15am for a few hours resulted in 40 Willow Emerald Damselfly being seen. Most were away from the stream on a dried up pool where they were seen in tandem, mating and ovipositing. Also seen were c30 Migrant Hawker, 2 Southern Hawker, 2 Ruddy Darter and a few Common Darter. Photos on my blog.
On a breezy, overcast afternoon, two female Willow Emerald Damselflies were seen perched in Hawthorn bushes along the Grassland Trail footpath to the north-west of the wet grassland at RSPB Frampton Marsh.
In the warm early afternoon sunshine today at least 3 pairs of Willow Emeralds and 3 or 4 males were settling on a mature oak tree about 5m above one of the ponds at Swannington Upgate Common. Two females appeared to be attempting to oviposit into the outer branches until the pairs were disturbed by intruding males. Also present at least 4 Southern Hawkers, 2 Migrant Hawkers and several Ruddy Darters.
4 Willow Emeralds at TL 48395 13753. Three adult males and one teneral male. Also Female Banded Demoiselle, Brown Hawker and Common Darter.
At least 35 Willow Emerald Damselfly seen in an hours walk around Nethergong with a few mating pairs seen and photographed. Photos on my blog. Also still good numbers of Migrant Hawker and the odd Southern Hawker.
3 willow emeralds were spotted on the Rive Brede just outside Winchelsea, which is the first sighting of this species in the county. There was 1 solitary male and a pair in tandem ovipositing.
Male on rushes bordering moat at Baconsthorpe Castle, North Norfolk: Late afternoon, pair on dried stalk, edge of lake.
11 Willow Emeralds at Castle Pond, 120M NW of Haverhill Rugby Club TL65799 45770. Joined pair and a triple joined, the remainder territorial males.
Today's count on a smaller section of the reserve recorded 50+ Migrant Hawkers, 65+ Common Blue Damselfy and 28 Common Darter.
Male Brown Hawker fending off 5+ Migrant Hawkers on River Nene opposite Peterborough Yacht Club.
This afternoon I returned to Myddelton House Gardens, Enfield to help my wife pack up her art exhibition, but first I rechecked the lake there and found another 2 Willow Emerald Damselfly. I then walked to the close by Forty Hall Country Park, Enfield where on the Turkey Brook fishing lake I recorded a further 2 Willow Emeralds. Also seen 1 Migrant Hawker and 1 Common Darter.
Five Willow Emeralds on the Decoy Pond at RSPB Broadwater Warren, East Sussex
Finally found some Willow Emeralds at Fen Drayton Lakes RSPB, on Elney Lake. Also Common Blue, Blue-tailed and Small Red-eyed Damselflies and Migrant Hawker, Common and Ruddy Darter.
A single male Willow emerald damselfly this afternoon, along the great stour river bank, just under kings mead road, opposite Sainsburys car park, perched on the top of some gone-over flag iris, continually flying off catching tiny invertebrates then returning back to the same plant. Around 1:15pm.
white ash pond: c15 Willow emerald in the trees , some in tandem . 1 emerald damselfly , 5+ migrant hawkers , ruddy darter , common darter . then did ful lcircuit of the park visiting more ponds and followed the river near the golf course but no further Willow emerald . several hornets and a few butterflys.
A visit to this site today primarily to search for Willow-emerald Damselflies saw the following: Willow-emerald Damselfly - 2(Male and female); Common-blue Damselfly - 5; Blue-tailed Damselfly - 1; Migrant Hawker - 10; Brown Hawker - 3; Common Darter - 4; Ruddy Darter - 5
I have recently made a wildlife pond in my garden in The New Forest and i now have dragonflies in my garden for the first time in the 5 years i have been living there. we were sat watching the pond last night - around 5-7pm time - and two Emporer dragonlies were hunting flies with the occasional tussle. every now and then my eyes were able to focus on the quick flyers and the colours were amazing.
100+ Migrant Hawker, 350+ Common Blue Damselfly, 80 Common Darter, 8 Ruddy Darter counted across half of the reserve.
I made an hours visit to Breney Common whilst on holiday with the family in sunny conditions and noted 5 Common Hawker, 1 female ovipositing, 6 Southern Hawker, 1 female Migrant Hawker ovipositing, 1 Black Darter, 1 Beautiful Demoiselle and good numbers of Common Darter and Emerald Damselfly. Photos will appear on my blog in due course.
20+ Southern Hawkers and 1 Migrant Hawker were seen in the Millennium Wetlands today along with Common Blue and Blue-tailed Damselflies.
Knoll Gardens, Wimborne, Dorset
I visited Fir & Pond Wood NR near Potters Bar today, and worked my way through the almost impassable Willow Carr area to find the 3 'Secret Ponds'. Here at one of them I recorded 2 Willow Emerald Damselfly (m). Also seen at these ponds were many Migrant Hawker, Common Darter, Ruddy Darter and Emerald Damselfly.
Classic autumn species this afternoon with a few Common Blue Damselflies, single Southern Hawker, single Brown Hawker, at least 2 Migrant Hawkers and many Common Darters.
At Newbridge pool,Winsford(SJ652687)1pr of Small Red-eyed Damselflies mating and a further 6 males noted at this new site.This is a private fishing water but views can be obtained with a scope from the gate.At the nearby Big pond ,Vale Royal Cut(SJ647693) I could only find 1m Small Red-eyed and 1mRed-eyed,5 Common Blue and 13 Blue-tailed Damselflies with 18 Migrant Hawkers and 2 Brown Hawkers and 25 Common Darters with many egg laying females.
After my successful discovery of Willow Emerald Damselfly in Enfield on Tuesday, I decided to look closer to home at Tyttenhanger Gravel Pits this afternoon, and it was very pleasing to watch many flying on the edge of the scrape, 8 in all including 2 egg-laying pairs. Also seen Migrant Hawker(9), Common Blue Damselfly(15), Ruddy Darter(5), Common Darter(1)
Today on a visit to Myddelton House Gardens, Enfield, my wife & I were very surprised to discover 4 or 5 Willow Emerald Damselflies at one end of the lake, and flying and settling on the reeds and the overhanging tree. I can't be sure, but I think this probably is the first ever record of this Damselfly in Middlesex. Also seen Common Darter (6) and singles of Ruddy Darter and Migrant Hawker.
40 x counted at home in Thurston, Suffolk (20 last year). also adjacent renovated pond 8 counted.
Two individuals and one pair Willow Emeralds in Blyth navigation, Halesworth town park this pm despite poor weather. Good numbers here in previous years but margins now very overgrown - Willow Herb and Himalayan Balsam.
Migrant Hawkers have taken over the ditch from the SMH's. Well over 40 noted along the ditch with 7 tandem pairs. There was however two male SMH (affinis) observed at rest. Good numbers of Ruddy Darter 30 plus and 5 Blue tailed Damselflies.
Black Darter abundant at Coire Loch NH 294282 , many mating pairs ovipositing.
Northern Emerald on bog at NH 198231 across river from upper car park.
Scotch Argus ubiquitous here, Glen Cannich, and Strathfarrar.
Present this morning were Large Red-eyed Damselfly (1), Common Blue Damselfly, Brown Hawker (1+), Migrant Hawker (3+) and Common Darter (pr).
Southern Hawker - female, brownish with green markings flew into the house. Guided back outside and flew away.
A four hour visit today at Nethergong from 10:30am in cloudy but improving weather produced an excellent count of 144 Willow Emerald Damselfly. 2 mixed pairings were seen and 1 threesome!. Some very interesting behaviour seen in the mixed pairings which I will post on my blog in due course. Also noted were c20 Emerald Damselfly, 1 Southern Hawker, 2 Brown Hawker and c15 Migrant Hawker.
Eventually caught up with a Migrant Hawker which is the 21st species of Odonata I have seen at this site this year. Also seen Common Blue Damselfly, a Brown Hawker and a probable Southern Hawker.
Perched on the Rhododendron bush behind my pond a very nice female Southern Hawker. It then circled the garden and disappeared over the trees.
Brief flurry of activity in afternoon sunshine: Azure Hawker, Common Hawker, Black Darter on flooded track between Glen Affric and Toll Creagach at NH205259
Willow Emeralds around the lake at Baconsthorpe Castle, North Norfolk
I made another visit to Nethergong between 10:30 - 3pm in warm sunny conditions and made an excellent count of 131 Willow Emerald Damselfly. At least 40 pairs were seen arriving at the stream in tandem and ovipositing was noted into many Stinging Nettle stems along with Reed and Alder used. Also seen were c30 Migrant Hawker, c15 Emerald Damselfly, 4 Southern Hawker and 2 Brown Hawker. Photos on blog.
An afternoon visit to Nethergong between midday and 3pm in mostly cloudy conditions with a few rare sunny spells produced 45 Willow Emerald Damselfly, c25 Migrant Hawker, c10 Emerald Damselfly, 2 Brown Hawker and 1 Southern Hawker.
Male southern hawker seen in my son's garden. It was sitting on the fence for at least 5 mins, then flew into the trees where we watched it for another 5 mins. There is no water or ponds nearby. Grandchildren were fascinated by what they had seen. I do have pictures of the southern hawker if anyone is interested in seeing them.
A return visit to Winchester's Pond at Lullington Heath yesterday (14th) to search for Southern Emerald Damselfly proved fruitless, but we did count 46 Migrant Hawkers patrolling nearby rides, a couple of Southern Hawkers and, at the pond itself, eleven Blue-tailed Damselflies, a single Emperor Dragonfly and three Common Darters. Not a bad return considering the cloudy weather.
The Dragonfly was first spotted on a garden birdfeeder resting and not moving for at least 15 minutes . It was next to shrub and woodland and we have never seen any dragonflies before . I have a photo but only on my mobile. It was quite distinctive with the spots. There is no water nearby.
On a morning visit to Springwell Lake in Middlesex ( but near to Rickmansworth in Herts) I found 35 Small Red eyed Damselfly on Lily pads at the north end of the lake. I beleive this species has spread in recent years in the Colne Valley as I have also found several atTroy Mill Lake ( Herts) to the south a few weeks ago. Also 15 Migrant hawker around the banks . ( John Edwards)
Seen flying around the Lilly Pond at Askett House (National Trust) near Leighton Buzzard on 7th August. It kept to shaded places and didn't stop hawking. I only had my phone with me, hence the poor photo.
Odonata present this morning were Azure Blue. Common Blue and Small Red-eyed Damselflies, Brown Hawker (6+), Emperor Dragonfly (1), Ruddy Dater (1) and Common Darters.
Sunday 5: Very hot day no moving air.
Lesser Emperor 1m. active over water for long period. Emperor 5m. 4+f. ovi., Golden-ringed 1m., Common Hawker 1 m., Southern Hawker 1m. 2f., Southern Migrant Hawker 1m.,holding territory over water, Broad-bodied Chaser 3f., 4-Spot Chaser 2m., Black-tailed Skimmer 20+ pairs and ovi., Keeled Skimmer 1m., Red-veined Darter 2m., Common Darter 25+ pairs and ovi., Emerald and Common Blue Damsels in very high number for this site, Blue-tailed seen, Beautiful Demoiselle 6.
Monday 6: Revisited the site today no trace of Lesser Emperor. Southern Migrant Hawker same male as yesterday identified. Other species the same. Similar weather conditions.