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Large red damselfly

Large red damselfly

The large red damselfly is fairly common wherever there is water in the New Forest and can often be seen along streams or by ponds or bogs. It is widespread and common throughout the UK.

This beautiful little insect can be seen almost anywhere near water and breeds in bogs, pools, ditches, ponds and streams. The only habitat that it seems not to like is very fast-flowing streams. It is the earliest of the dragonflies and damselflies to appear in the year and can be seen in sunny weather from late April through to September. You are bound to see them at ponds such as Hatchet Pond, but many people often see them in their gardens – even if they have not got a pond.

Photo credit: David Ellis

ID Tip

ID Tip

Large red damselflies are in fact quite small. There are only two species of red damselfly in the UK and the large red is the common one that you will see almost anywhere. If you see a red-coloured damselfly in your garden, local stream or pond it will almost certainly be a large red. It can be told from the small red damselfly by its black legs. The legs of small red damselfly are red.

Lead Ranger


'To help ground nesting birds rear their young safely, keep yourself, dogs and ridden horses on the main tracks from the beginning of March to the end of August.'

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