Bury Wildlife

Dragon and Damsel Flies

Banded Demoiselle - Calopteryx splendens Found flitting around emergent vegetation of slow running streams, rivers and canals with muddy bottoms. It is very sensitive to pollution so a good indicator of clean water. Seen on the Irwell River Valley Prestwich Forest and 2011 Elton Reservoir.


Emerald Damselfly - Lestes sponsa A medium-sized damselfly which characteristically holds wings open at 45 degrees when perched, unlike other damselflies. This species favours shallow water sites with dense stands of emergent vegetation. . Such a specific habitat preference means that the Emerald Damselfly has a rather local and scattered distribution . Males green female powdery blue, In Bury onlseen on Spenmoor ponds but sould be at other locations.


Azure Damselfly - Coenagrion puella Identified from common blue by U mark on body behind thorax. Well-vegetated, sheltered habits are favoured,  to woodland rides, It has a one year life cycle, most of which is spent in the larval stage. Very common


Common Blue Damselfly - Enallagma cyathigerum It favours open water habitat such as large ponds, lakes, canals and rivers but adults can be found away from water in shady spots such as woodland rides. Distinguished from the azure by a thin blue line and heart shape on the body behimd the thorax. Very common nationally and in Bury but not as common as the Azure.

Blue-tailed Damselfly - Ischnura elegans. This is a very common species which can be found almost anywhere in Britain. It can be tolerant of polution. It has other colour forms and flies till September, Common in Bury.


Red Damselfly - Pyrrhosoma nymphula. The earliest dragonfly or damselfly to appear . It has a two year lifecycle. has a preference for well-vegetated sites, and is found on a variety of water bodies including ponds, lakes, rivers and canals.Common along he canal and rivers throughout Bury.


Red-eyed Damselfly Erythromma najas Found in lakes, gravel pits, canals and slow-flowing rivers. The males often sit on water lily leaves defending their leaf from allcomers. This is a species moving north and is currently found in Altringham. In time it will reach Bury.

Southern Hawker - Aeshna cyanea. Often recorded well away from water, though for breeding purposes it prefers smaller water bodies with wooded margins; garden pools are well used breeding sites. Found from mid to late summer patrolling its territory before perching nearby. It can flyy up close to inspect people.Widfespread in Bury if thinly spread at Elton Res, Ainsworth Burrs ans the canal.


Brown Hawker - Aeshna grandis This dragonfly is easily distinguished. with a rich brown and yellow markings. Breeding in a wide range of habitats ranging from still waters to slow flowing rivers, and frequently encountered in urban areas. Very common especially alongth canal.


Migrant Hawker Aeshna mixta A small Hawker, not aggressive towards other individuals and occasionally seen in large feeding swarms. It flies late into the autumn and is likely to be the only Hawker found in November. Common and increasing its range. Strongholds in southern England, but now reaching well into northern England and recently appeared in Ireland.


Emperor Dragonfly - Anax imperator. This is one of Europe's largest dragonflies. The male is easy to identify with its apple green thorax and bright blue abdomen and blue eyes. The female is mostly green and also has the apple green thorax. Large ponds, lakes, canals and slow moving rivers are the preferred habitat of the Emperor Dragonfly, particular those with abundant submerged and floating vegetation. The male circumnavigates its territory and chases off any other dragonfly that comes near. Widespread but not common seen on Spenmoor and Prestwicg Forest.

Broad-bodied Chaser - Libellula depressa A dragonfly with a very broad, flattened abdomen. The male is blue and the female yellow. It can be distinguished from the Four-spotted Chaser by the absence of the wing spots. It favours shallow still water habitats and is found in well-vegetated and still ponds. Seen around Elton Reservoir.


Four-spotted Chaser - Libellula quadrimaculata. It prefers well-vegetated water . Males are highly territorial and select a prominent perch over-looking the water to look for females, other males and prey. It can fly long disyances. Local and scattered throughout Bury in Cheesden and Elton Reservoir area.


Black-tailed Skimmer - Orthetrum cancellatum Often basking on bare waterside banks, in particular at recently dug ponds and gravel pits. Females are less bold. The adults feed from perches, often pouncing on butterflies, grasshoppers and damselflies. Mature males are territorial. First appeared in UK 1935. Frequest south of the Humber in Bury only seen once in 2009 on Elton Reservoir.

Common Darter - Sympetrum striolatum The male is orange-red and females are largely green to pale orange. The Common Darter iflies from late June and can be seen into November often away from water, this species like to perch on fences, twigs and wires whilst it searches for passing prey and to warm up. Very common.


Ruddy Darter Sympetrum sanguineum  This species is smaller than the Common Darter which can also go red in males. The legs are entirely black.  The males become blood-red with maturity with a red frons and red-brown thorax. There is a very noticeable constriction of the abdomen around S4, giving a club-shaped appearence. Records exist around Radclife.


Black Darter Symptrum danae - This small heathland and moorland species is the only UK black dragonfly (males) This is a female from a site near Bury. Species of peat moss and moorland, breeding in ponds, bog pools and drainage ditches. Almost ceretainly present in Bury on upland areas.