Monday, 12 February 2018

Large Red Damselfly Nymph (Pyrrhosoma nymphula)

After visiting Westbere Lakes at the weekend for a bit of dipping, I called into a friends house to have a look in their pond for some Large Red Damselfly nymphs. In the past few years, I have found a good number in the pond but on this occasion, I only found 2 Large Red Damselfly nymphs along with a few Azure Damselfly nymphs and 2 small Broad bodied Chaser nymphs. I am hoping that because of the cold conditions and the fact that the pond has been freezing over, that more may have been lurking in the depths. I shall hopefully return in a few weeks to have another look when the water and weather finally start to warm up a little. With the start of the season only about 7 weeks away and the first to emerge being the Large Red Damselfly, I decided to bring one of the Large Red Damselfly nymphs back home where I spent an afternoon taking a number of photos in my indoor photography tank. They tend to be quite easy to identify by their blotchy caudal lamellae which often forms an 'X' shape and I have also witnessed them seemingly communicating by swaying their caudal lamellae from side to side to each other. Hopefully the weeks will pass quickly, the weather will warm up and we will be set to once again, welcome in a new season full of anticipation.

Large Red Damselfly Nymph (female)


  1. These are fabulous, Marc. I find them entertaining as well as interesting. That last image is my favourite!

    It doesn't feel as if the season is very near at the moment - it's flipping cold here!

    Best wishes - - - Richard

  2. Many thanks Richard. I hope others get as much pleasure at looking at them as I do taking them. Hopefully some of the id points can be seen well to help aid identification. It certainly does seem to be cold at the moment. Back to rain and wind tomorrow. Roll on summer!

  3. Your photography never ceases to amaze me, as a photographer I know the skill required to get shots like these.

    1. Many thanks Mike. It's a lot of setting up to make it all work. It can be very time consuming but very rewarding when it comes good.

  4. How do you know the difference between each Nymph, it looks so alike Marc. The photos are wonderful.

  5. Many thanks Bob. Each nymph is identifiable by sometimes looking at the spotting on the head, banding on legs, shape of mask and the shape/ patterning of the causal Lamellae. Some can be very tricky but it's fun and educational to learn the necessary features.