Sympetrum striolatum (m) Common Darter D535 3WP

136. Common Darter – Sympetrum striolatum – UK – European Dragonfly photo

The Common Darter ( Sympetrum striolatum ) is widespread and as common as its name implies. It is also migratory, sometimes in large numbers. It breeds in a range of different waters but seems to prefer those which are quite shallow and stagnant which consequently heat up. The Common Darter is often one of the first species to colonise newly created ponds in a similar way to the Broad-bodied Chaser – Libellula depressa.


Males when mature have abdomens which are less deeply red than others in the family and they are barely clubbed.  The thorax has two small antehumeral stripes with two prominent yellow patches when seen from the side. These can be seen clearly in the first photo. The legs are black but with yellow on the tibiae and femora. Immature males are yellow.

Females are yellow which darkens considerably with age.

Lindow Common, Wilmslow, Cheshire


Sympetrum striolatum (m) Common Darter D5355 A-1-700x479

Sympetrum striolatum (m) Common Darter D5346 CS5-1-700x481

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Sympertum striolatum (m) Common Darter WP 8-5215-2

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Sympetrum striolatum - ageing male - Common Darter LR 8-2311

Sympetrum striolatum (ageing m) Common Darter 8-1159 -700x481

Sympetrum striolatum (m) Common Darter WP 8-3-9076

Sympetrum striolatum (tandem pair) Common Darter

Sympetrum striolatum (ten f) Common Darter 3-6862 WP

Symperum striolatum (f) Common Darter WP 8-5153

Sympetrum striolatum (f) Common Darter 8-3502 W

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Sympetrum striolatum (in cop) Common Darter WP 8-3-9082

Sympetrum striolatum in cop Common Darter 8 W-3531