Nick Upton's picture

Skimmer dragonfly, Lesbos, Greece.

Observed: 31st May 2011 By: Nick UptonNick Upton’s reputation in InvertebratesNick Upton’s reputation in InvertebratesNick Upton’s reputation in InvertebratesNick Upton’s reputation in Invertebrates
Lesbos skimmer dragonfly
Lesbos skimmer dragonfly 1

Can anyone ID this skimmer dragonfly from Lesbos. I think the first shot may be a male Epaulet skimmer Orthetrum chrysostigmata, which is recorded on the island, but they seem so variable in colour that I can't be sure. I photographed a much more certain female of this species in profile nearby (shot 2), with a clear white stripe on the thorax, but I'd appreciate confirmation/ a different idea on the first one, and correction if I'm wrong on the second!

    Likely ID
    Epaulet skimmer (Orthetrum chrysostigmata)
    Confidence: It's likely to be this, but I can't be certain.
Species interactions

No interactions present.


RoyW's picture

Keeled Skimmer & B-b Chaser

The left hand shot shows a maturing male Keeled Skimmer, Orthetrum coerulescens, and the right hand photo shows a female Broad-bodied Chaser, Libellula depressa.

Male Epaulet Skimmers have a noticeable 'waist' where the abdomen narrows just behind the thorax, and females are relatively slim - nowhere near as bulky as the dragonfly in the second photo (+all European Orthetrum species lack any black markings at the base of the wings).

Nick Upton's picture

Dragonfly IDs

Many thanks for these quick and helpful IDs. So many dragonfly colours change so much as they mature, it's good to know what the stable features are!

Nick Upton, naturalist and photographer.