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Red-eyed Damselfly (Erythromma najas)

At first glance, males resemble Blue-tailed Damselflies but closer look will reveal the most obvious feature - the blood red eyes. It is robust for a Damselfly, the blackish top to the thorax does not have any (antehumeral) blue stripes on the male although the side of the thorax is blue with two narrow black lines. A wide range of water habitats is favoured, especially where there is floating vegetation. The males can be easily found by scanning lily pads or other surface foliage.

Portraits of males invariably on a Lily pad or other surface vegetation ....

Red-eyed Damselfly

Even with the eyes not glowing in dull light the all black top of the thorax eliminates Blue-tailed Damselfly.

Red-eyed Damselfly

The lack of antehumeral stripes on the male thorax is apparent, even when seen side on.

sbgallery Red eyed Damselfly  Berrington 22 7 10 IMG_3122

A close up of the head showing the striking red eyes ....

sbgallery Red eyed Damselfly vcu Berrington 22 7 10 Raw edit IMG_3142

Females are separated from males by the presence of yellowish antehumeral stripes, often broken. This is an immature female, pale eyes and subdued colours which will brighten on maturity ...

Red eyed Damselfly immature m or f Berrington 1 5 11 IMG_1497

Male and female in tandem, the brighter green adult female colouration is easily seen in the lower image, note the eyes which are brownish red....

Red-eyed Damselfly pair mating Berrington 21 5 11 IMG_8526

Red eyed Damselfly pair in tandem Berrington 29 5 12 IMG_2945

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