Calopteryx virgo (m) Beautiful Demoiselle WP

004. Beautiful Demoiselle – Calopteryx virgo – UK European Dragonfly photo

The Beautiful Demoiselle (Calopteryx virgo)  photo above shows the differing shades of green in the wings and body of the male which contrast well with the paler green of the leaf.

The more shaded and stony stream requirements of the species are shown in the photograph below which was taken in the superb Lower Woods Nature Reserve, Gloucestershire, UK. Compared to the Banded Demoiselle (Calopteryx splendens) this species is able to breed in cooler conditions but does need higher oxygen levels in the water hence it is more often found in faster flowing small streams and rivers at a higher elevations.

The third and fourth photos are of the male form festiva which were taken in  Lesvos, Greece and show the largest of the Calopteryx species with completely dark blue wings.

Males have significant wing pigmentation which can appear purple-blue. The wings, and especially the hind wings, are also broader than in other Calopteryx species.
Females are quite difficult to separate from female Calopteryx splendens but the wings are broader and brownish, again with pale pseudopterostigma.

Lower Woods N.R., Inglestone Common, nr Wickwar, Glos.,

Calopteryx virgo (m) Beautiful Demoiselle 8-1867 WP

Calopteryx virgo (m) Beautiful Demoiselle 8-1869 WP

Calopteryx virgo (f) Beautiful Demoiselle D 4449 WP