Erythromma najas

Erythromma najas (red-eyed damselfly) is a member of the damselfly family Coenagrionidae.

Red-eyed damselfly
Erythromma najas 4(loz)
Scientific classification
E. najas
Binomial name
Erythromma najas
(Hansemann, 1823)


The species is a small damselfly, 35 millimetres (1.4 in) long, predominantly black with iridescent blue markings. The male resembles blue-tailed damselflies (Ischnura species) but is distinguished by its large, spaced eyes that are a deep red. It is very similar to the Small Red-eyed Damselfly.

Red-eyed damselfly (Erythromma najas) teneral male

teneral male

Red-eyed damselfly (Erythromma najas) female



Males typically spent much of their time perched the leaves of floating vegetation such as water lilies or mats of algae.


  • "Erythromma najas". British Dragonfly Society. Retrieved 27 May 2011.
  • Brooks & Lewington (2004). Field Guide to the Dragonflies and Damselflies of Great Britain and Ireland. British Wildlife Publishing. ISBN 0-9531399-0-5.

External links


Damselflies are insects of the suborder Zygoptera in the order Odonata. They are similar to dragonflies, which constitute the other odonatan suborder, Anisoptera, but are smaller, have slimmer bodies, and most species fold the wings along the body when at rest. An ancient group, damselflies have existed since at least the Lower Permian, and are found on every continent except Antarctica.

All damselflies are predatory; both nymphs and adults eat other insects. The nymphs are aquatic, with different species living in a variety of freshwater habitats including acid bogs, ponds, lakes and rivers. The nymphs moult repeatedly, at the last moult climbing out of the water to undergo metamorphosis. The skin splits down the back, they emerge and inflate their wings and abdomen to gain their adult form. Their presence on a body of water indicates that it is relatively unpolluted, but their dependence on freshwater makes them vulnerable to damage to their wetland habitats.

Some species of damselfly have elaborate courtship behaviours. Many species are sexually dimorphic, the males often being more brightly coloured than the females. Like dragonflies, they reproduce using indirect insemination and delayed fertilisation. A mating pair form a shape known as a "heart" or "wheel", the male clasping the female at the back of the head, the female curling her abdomen down to pick up sperm from secondary genitalia at the base of the male's abdomen. The pair often remain together with the male still clasping the female while she lays eggs within the tissue of plants in or near water using a robust ovipositor.

Fishing flies that mimic damselfly nymphs are used in wet-fly fishing. Damselflies sometimes provide the subject for personal jewellery such as brooches.

Dinton Pastures Country Park

Dinton Pastures Country Park is a country park in the civil parish of St Nicholas Hurst, in the borough of Wokingham, near Reading in the English county of Berkshire.

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.


Erythromma is a genus of damselfly in the family Coenagrionidae. It contains the following species:

Erythromma lindenii (Selys, 1840) – Blue-Eye

Erythromma najas (Hansemann, 1823) – Large Redeye

Erythromma viridulum Charpentier, 1840 – Small Redeye

Lavells Lake

Lavells Lake is a local nature reserve in Woodley, Berkshire, England. The nature reserve is owned by Wokingham Borough Council and managed by the council in partnership with the Friends of Lavell's Lake. The nature reserve is within the Dinton Pastures Country Park.

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 Finland

List of Odonata species recorded in Finland include all dragonflies (Anisoptera) and damselflies (Zygoptera) which have been recorded in Finland. Currently there are 57 species and only one species (Nehalennia speciosa) is classified as endangered (EN) Six species are protected by law.

List of Odonata species of Great Britain

There are 57 recorded species of Odonata in Britain, made up of 21 damselflies (suborder Zygoptera) and 36 dragonflies (suborder Anisoptera). Of these, 42 species (17 damselflies and 25 dragonflies) are resident breeders, and the remainder are either extinct species, or vagrants - in respect of the latter, this list follows the decisions of the Odonata Records Committee.

Some of these rare species have not been seen since the 19th Century; however, the British Odonata list is also currently undergoing a period of unprecedented change, as new species are being discovered for the first time, some going on to become breeding species.

This list is based on the following principal references:

Merritt, R., N. W. Moore and B. C. Eversham (1996), Atlas of the dragonflies of Britain and Ireland, HMSO (ISBN 0-11-701561-X)

Parr, A. J. (1996), Dragonfly movement and migration in Britain and Ireland, Journal of the British Dragonfly Society Vol. 12 No. 2 pp. 33–50

Parr, Adrian (2000a), An Annotated List of the Odonata of Britain and Ireland, Atropos No. 11 pp. 10–20 A number of other references were used to provide information on specific topics, including rare vagrants, post-1990 additions, predictions, species claimed but not accepted / species of uncertain provenance, non-natives, taxonomic matters and species found only in the Channel Islands.

Ireland's Odonata fauna is quite different from that of Britain, with many fewer breeding species, but one additional species not found in Britain, Irish Damselfly Coenagrion lunulatum – see List of Odonata species of Ireland for more information.

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.

Small red-eyed damselfly

The small red-eyed damselfly (Erythromma viridulum) is a member of the damselfly family Coenagrionidae. It is very similar to the red-eyed damselfly.

Wasing Wood Ponds

Wasing Wood Ponds is a site of Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). the ponds are in Wasing Wood on the edge of Wasing in Berkshire. The ponds are special for their range of Odonata.

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