Azure Damselfly

I was very fortunate to have seen this beauty a couple of days ago, let alone manage to photograph him! I’m still not sure what he was doing so far away from a source of water. I’d gone outside to photograph an amazing sky – it was azure blue (coincidence!) and full of wonderful cirrus clouds. I was just about to go inside when I noticed him alight on a moss-rose leaf right next to me. Many permutations went through my mind: ‘Shall I even attempt to photograph him?’, ‘How should I move into position without disturbing him?’ and so on. Anyway, after a bit of fumbling around, changing settings on the camera, and negotiating a position where I wasn’t going to frighten him, I took a few photographs. I wasn’t helped by a stiff breeze which was blowing the leaf – with damselfly firmly attached – all over the place! He stayed in place for a few seconds and allowed me to photograph him. I was so pleased to have captured one shot of him fairly in focus.

Then the identification, which wasn’t easy as there are a few damselflies with very similar colours and markings. What distinguishes this male damselfly from the Common Blue and the Southern Damselfly is its U shaped marking on the second segment, and the ‘crown’ shape on the ninth segment. I knew next to nothing about these wonderful creatures before – nor what distinguishes them from Dragonflies. Apparently, most damselflies hold their wings – which are of equal size – horizontally along their body when at rest, whilst dragonflies have unequal size wings and open them when at rest. The eyes of the dragonfly touch, whereas the damselfly eyes do not.

For a contrast, have a look at these beautiful photographs of dragonflies from Sandy at Garden Path, and Stuatto at Alive and Clicking.

Further information can be found at:

http://www.british-dragonflies.org.uk/species/azure-damselfly

http://www.plymouth.gov.uk/homepage/environmentandplanning/natureconservation/wildlife/wildlifespecies/dragonflies/azuredamselfly.htm

http://www.newforestdragonflies.com/DMAzure.html

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10 thoughts on “Azure Damselfly

  1. Well done for catching him on camera in such blustery conditions! I also wouldn’t have known the difference – even that there were any – between damselflies and dragonflies. I knew I’d learn things here!

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    • Thank you Lu. I was very fortunate that one of the photos came out ok. A fantastically beautiful tiny moth came into the garden last week – he was gold and purple, but the photos I took are pretty poor which is a shame. It’s great to discover new things about wildlife and nature, though, isn’t it Lu? I just realise there’s so much I don’t know and have yet to discover!

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  2. I love these tiny blue ones, but sometimes my eyes cross trying to focus on them!

    Yesterday I was out looking for damsels, but didn’t find any. I did shoot a pretty gold colored dragonfly that I will be posting soon.

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