Brown hawker

The brown hawker (Aeshna grandis) is a large dragonfly about 73 millimetres (2.9 in) long. It is a distinctive species and is easily recognised, even in flight, by its brown body and bronze wings. At rest, blue spots on the second and third segments of the male's abdomen can be noticed; these are absent in female.

The flight time is mainly July to September. The nymph has stripes on the side of the thorax and distinct banding on the legs.

Brown hawker
Braune Mosaikjungfer (Aeshna grandis)
Male A. grandis
Aeshna grandis f 1812
Female A. grandis
Scientific classification
A. grandis
Binomial name
Aeshna grandis


Aeshna grandis is common in central and eastern Europe. In Europe, it can be found everywhere from Ireland to the Urals, with some exceptions like Scotland, northernmost Scandinavia and the Iberian and Apennine peninsulas. There is a population in the Balkans.

It is widespread in England but commonest in the south-east; local in Ireland and rare in Scotland. It is found on well-vegetated ponds, lakes and canals. It patrols a regular hunting territory around margins which is vigorously defended against intruders.


  • "Aeshna grandis". British Dragonfly Society. Retrieved 27 May 2011.

External links

A. grandis

A. grandis may refer to:

Abies grandis, the grand fir, giant fir, lowland white fir, great silver fir, Western white fir, Vancouver fir or Oregon fir, a tree species native to the Pacific Northwest and Northern California of North America

Aeshna grandis, the brown hawker, a large dragonfly species widespread in England

Alternanthera grandis, a plant species endemic to Ecuador

Angistorhinus grandis, an extinct phytosaur species found in Texas and Wyoming in the United States and that lived from the Late Triassic period

Astelia grandis, a plant species in the genus Astelia native to New Zealand

Aublysodon grandis, a nomen dubium given to a large number of carnivorous dinosaur teeth


Aeshna is a genus of dragonflies from the family Aeshnidae. They are also known as hawker dragonflies, or, in North America, as mosaic darners.

Colemere Countryside Site

Colemere Countryside Site is a country park 3 miles (4.8 km) south-east of Ellesmere, Shropshire.


A dragonfly is an insect belonging to the order Odonata, infraorder Anisoptera (from Greek ἄνισος anisos, "unequal" and πτερόν pteron, "wing", because the hindwing is broader than the forewing). Adult dragonflies are characterized by large, multifaceted eyes, two pairs of strong, transparent wings, sometimes with coloured patches, and an elongated body. Dragonflies can be mistaken for the related group, damselflies (Zygoptera), which are similar in structure, though usually lighter in build; however, the wings of most dragonflies are held flat and away from the body, while damselflies hold the wings folded at rest, along or above the abdomen. Dragonflies are agile fliers, while damselflies have a weaker, fluttery flight. Many dragonflies have brilliant iridescent or metallic colours produced by structural coloration, making them conspicuous in flight. An adult dragonfly's compound eyes have nearly 24,000 ommatidia each.

Fossils of very large dragonfly ancestors in the Protodonata are found from 325 million years ago (Mya) in Upper Carboniferous rocks; these had wingspans up to about 750 mm (30 in). There are about 3,000 extant species. Most are tropical, with fewer species in temperate regions.

Dragonflies are predators, both in their aquatic larval stage, when they are known as nymphs or naiads, and as adults. Several years of their lives are spent as nymphs living in fresh water; the adults may be on the wing for just a few days or weeks. They are fast, agile fliers, sometimes migrating across oceans, and often live near water. They have a uniquely complex mode of reproduction involving indirect insemination, delayed fertilization, and sperm competition. During mating, the male grasps the female at the back of the head, and the female curls her abdomen under her body to pick up sperm from the male's secondary genitalia at the front of his abdomen, forming the "heart" or "wheel" posture.

Loss of wetland habitat threatens dragonfly populations around the world. Dragonflies are represented in human culture on artifacts such as pottery, rock paintings, and Art Nouveau jewelry. They are used in traditional medicine in Japan and China, and caught for food in Indonesia. They are symbols of courage, strength, and happiness in Japan, but seen as sinister in European folklore. Their bright colours and agile flight are admired in the poetry of Lord Tennyson and the prose of H. E. Bates.

Englemere Pond

Englemere Pond is a local nature reserve near North Ascot in Berkshire. The reserve is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). The site is owned by Crown Estate and managed by Bracknell Forest Borough Council.

Ham Common, Dorset

Ham Common is a Local Nature Reserve at Hamworthy, near Poole, Dorset. Located on the north west shores of Poole Harbour, it is predominantly a heathland site but includes many other habitats including waste ground, mixed woodland, and a freshwater lake (Hamworthy Lake). Parking for the site can be found at Hamworthy Beach with access to the waterside for kayaking etc, or above the common from Napier Road. Easy walking access from Haven Rockley Holiday Park.

On 17 October 2003 Ham Common 'twinned' with Fleet Pond Local Nature Reserve in Hampshire. In 2006 a twinning event, and plaque unveiling, took place at Ham Common.

Heath Lake

Heath Lake is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and local nature reserve based in Berkshire on the edge of Crowthorne. Heath Lake is the only example of an acid lake in Berkshire which still retains its characteristic flora. The site is managed by Wokingham Borough Council

List of Odonata species of Estonia

This page contains a list of the dragonfly species recorded in Estonia. The total number of species recorded is 51 (made up of 17 damselflies (suborder Zygoptera) and 34 true dragonflies) (suborder Anisoptera)

List of Odonata species of Ireland

The following is a list of Odonata species recorded in Ireland. Common names are those given in the standard literature; where a different name has been given in The Natural History of Ireland's Dragonflies, this is given in brackets.

Moses Harris

Moses Harris (15 April 1730 – c. 1788) was an English entomologist and engraver.

Neuroptera in the 10th edition of Systema Naturae

In the 10th edition of Systema Naturae, Carl Linnaeus classified the arthropods, including insects, arachnids and crustaceans, among his class "Insecta". Insects with net-veined wings were brought together under the name Neuroptera.

North Meadow, Cricklade

North Meadow, Cricklade (grid reference SU094946) is a hay meadow near the town of Cricklade, in Wiltshire, England. It is 24.6 hectares in size. It is a traditionally managed lowland hay-meadow, or lammas land, and is grazed in common between 12 August and 12 February each year, and cut for hay no earlier than 1 July. This pattern of land use and management has existed for many centuries and has resulted in the species rich grassland flora and fauna present on the site.

Over 250 species of higher plant occur in the meadow, but it is of particular note as it holds by far the largest British population of the snake's-head fritillary (Fritillaria meleagris). The 500,000 fritillaries which flower each year represent 80% of the British population.


Orlången is a lake in central Huddinge Municipality, just south of Stockholm, Sweden.

Orlången, one of the lakes in the Tyresån Lake System, forms part of the Orlången Nature Reserve.

Prees Branch Canal Nature Reserve

Prees Branch Canal Nature Reserve is a Shropshire Wildlife Trust nature reserve in the civil parish of Whixall, Shropshire, England. It is a Site of Special Scientific Interest due to the presence of rare pondweeds (Potamogeton), and also is the home of watervoles. Dragonflies and other invertebrates occur in the water, on the banks and in the air above. The reserve contains a number of uncommon plants and is visited by birds such as the kingfisher and waterfowl. Otters sometimes occur.

The Prees Branch canal was originally meant to be an extension of the Ellesmere Canal (now the Llangollen Canal) to Prees, but was only constructed as far as Quina Brook. It is only navigable as far as a marina, beyond which the reserve is effectively a long pond and its banks.

River Glaven

The River Glaven in the eastern English county of Norfolk is 10½ miles long and flows through picturesque North Norfolk countryside to the North Sea. Rising from a tiny headwater in Bodham the river starts 2½ miles before Selbrigg Pond where three streams combine at the outfall. The scenic value of the Glaven valley is important to the tourist industry in North Norfolk. The River is also 15km long and is one of over 200 chalk rivers in the world and one of 160 in the UK.

Sandhurst to Owlsmoor Bogs and Heaths

Sandhurst to Owlsmoor Bogs and Heaths is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) based in Berkshire between Crowthorne, Owlsmoor, Little Sandhurst and Sandhurst. Part of the site is a nature reserve called Wildmoor Heath which is managed by the Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire Naturalists Trust.

Seven Acres Country Park, Bolton

Seven Acres Country Park is a country park and Local Nature Reserve in Bolton, Greater Manchester. It lies between the areas of Tonge and Breightmet, and is dissected by Bradshaw Brook. Seven Acres Country Park is more than 300 years old, and is depicted on maps dating back to at least 1764.

Wandle Valley Wetland

Wandle Valley Wetland is a 0.6 hectare Local Nature Reserve in Carshalton in the London Borough of Sutton. It is owned by the Council and managed by the Council together with Sutton Nature Conservation Volunteers.The site has open water and seasonal pools, scrub and wet woodland. There are frogs, toads and newts, together with Brown Hawker dragonflies and birds including blackcaps and wrens.The entrance in Budge Lane is kept locked and there is no public access.

Wilson's Pits

Wilson's Pits is a 32 hectare nature reserve west of Higham Ferrers in Northamptonshire. It is managed by the Wildlife Trust for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire. It is part of the Upper Nene Valley Gravel Pits Site of Special Scientific Interest, Ramsar internationally important wetland site and Special Protection Area under the EC Birds Directive.This site has three lakes in former gravel pits, and it also has areas of grassland and scrub. There are diverse bird species, and flora such as rageed-robin, brooklime, common spotted orchid and creeping jenny. Dragonflies include the brown hawker and black-tailed skimmer.There is access from the Nene Way long distance footpath, but as of March 2017 it is closed while works are carried out to widen an adjacent roundabout.

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