Key to the Swedish damselflies

This is a translation of Tobias Ivarsson's amazing "Trollsländor i Ulricehamnsbygden". It's a great honor for me to have the possibility to show this key here at "Swedish dragonflies". Ulricehamnsbygden. I have now, together with Tobias expanded this key to cover most Swedish damselflies, only the species that have been discorered the latest years in Sweden are not included Comments and corrections are very welcome by e-mail: petzon@petzon.se

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Problems reading the key? Maybe a look at The damselfy structure will help you.



1.Male (with accessory copulatory organs fig. 1)2
 Female (with egg-laying apparatus fig. 2)21
 
 
fig.1. The accessory copulatory organs of the male
fig.2. The egg-laying apparatus of the female
 
2.Damselfly looks metallic green3
 Colors of damselfly are matt (red, blue, white, green, black, brown) or dark bronze 9
 
3.Damselfly looks metallic blue, wings at least partly colored blue, no wing mark Calopteryx 4
 Damselfly is green or blue, with metallic bronze parts. Distinct wing mark 5
 
4.Wings almost totally blueCalopteryx virgo
 Wings transparent with a blue stripe crossingCalopteryx splendens
 
5.Damselfly very tiny, wing mark almost as wide as longNehalennia speciosa
 Damselfly big, wing mark at least double as long as wideLestes 6
 
6.Upper anal appendages big, the back side of the head is dark7
 Upper anal appendages very tiny (fig. 5), the back side of the head with a yellow edge8
 
7.Upper anal appendages points straight backwards (fig. 3)Lestes sponsa
 Upper anal appendages are curved towards each other (fig. 4)Lestes dryas
 
 
fig.3. Lestes sponsa, male, anal appendages
fig.4. Lestes dryas male, anal appendages
fig.5. Lestes virens, male, anal appendages
fig.6. Platycnemis pennipes, tibia
 
8.Wing mark one-colored, legs black with a yellow stripeLestes virens
 Wing mark two-colored dark/yellow, legs yellowish brownLestes barbarus
 
9.Tibias are broad and flat (fig. 6), double shoulder line, color of Damselfly is white-pale blue Platycnemis pennipes
 Tibias are not broad and flat, color of Damselfly is blue, green, black, red or brownish white10
 
10.Wing mark nearer apex of fore-wing than hind wingSympecma fusca
 Wing marks at equally distance from apex of both wings11
 
11.Head is dark on the upper part, at least eyes are red (at the mature ones)12
 Head with bright parts on the upper side, no red color at all13
 
12.Abdomen red with black marksPyrrhosoma nymphula
 Abdomen colored black or dark bronze and blueErythromma najas
 
13.Upper side of the second segment of the abdomen totally black, the spots at the upper side of the head circularIschnura 14
 Upper side of the second segment of abdomen blue, green or brown with black marks, the spots at the upper side of the head triangular, sometimes connected with a thin bright line15
 
14.Eighth segment of abdomen colored at the upper sideIschnura elegans
 Eighth segment of abdomen at least half blackIschnura pumilio
 
15.Thorax with a black line in the middle (fig. 7), shoulder line thinCoenagrion 16
 Thorax without a black line in the middle (fig. 8) shoulder line often broadEnallagma cyathigerum
 
16.Lower anal appendages are very large (fig. 9), damselfly mostly colored greenCoenagrion armatum
 Lower anal appendages are small, damselfly mostly colored blue17
 
 
fig.7. Coenagrion sp., male, thorax from side
fig.8. Enallagma cyathigerum, male, from side
fig.9. Coenagrion armatum, male, anal appendages
 
17.Third segment of abdomen with a black line at lower side (fig. 14), damselfly tinyCoenagrion johanssoni
 Third segment of abdomen with a black line at lower side 18
 
18.Mark at third segment of abdomen tapering or blunted (fig. 10 and 11)19
 Mark at third segment of abdomen U-shaped(fig.12 and 1320
 
19.Mark at third segment of abdomen tapering (fig. 10 check even mark at second segmentCoenagrion hastulatum
 Mark at third segment of abdomen are blunted (fig. 11), check even mark at second segmentCoenagrion lunulatum
 
20.Tubercle at prothorax distinctive (fig 15), even check mark at second segment of abdomen (fig. 12)Coenagrion pulchellum
 Tubercle at prothorax is distinctive(fig 16), even check mark at second segment of abdomen (fig. 13)Coenagrion puella
 
 
fig.10. Coenagrion hastulatum, male, second and third segment of abdomen
fig.11. Coenagrion lunulatum, male, second and third segment of abdomen
fig.12. Coenagrion pulchellum, male, second and third segment of abdomen
fig.13. Coenagrion puella, male, second and third segment of abdomen
fig.14. Coenagrion johanssoni, male, second and third segment of abdomen (side view)
fig.15. Coenagrion pulchellum, male, prothorax (side view)
fig.16. Coenagrion puella, male, prothorax (side view)
 
21.Damselfly with metallic glare22
 Damselfly colors matt (red, blue, white, green, black or dark bronze) 28
 
22.Wings colored, wing mark whiteCalopteryx 23
 Wings clear, wing mark black (at adult species) 24
 
23.Wings brownCalopteryx virgo
 Wings light greenCalopteryx splendens
 
24.Damselfly very tiny, wing mark almost as wide as longNehalennia speciosa
 Damselfly big, wing mark at least double as long as wide Lestes 25
 
25.Back side of the head dark26
 Back side of head yellow27
 
26.Prothorax with only dark spot at the back (fig. 17) Lestes sponsa
 Prothorax with dark spot at the back and dark stripe at the side (fig. 18)Lestes dryas
 
27.Wing mark one-colored, legs black with yellow stripeLestes virens
 Wing mark two-colored dark/yellow, legs yellowish brown Lestes barbarus
 
28.Tibias broad and flat, color of damselfly greenish yellow, white or rust Platycnemis pennipes
 Tibias not broad and flat, color of damselfly not white29
 
29.Wing mark nearer apex of fore-wing than hind wingSympecma fusca
 Wing marks at equally distance from apex of both wings 30
 
30.Head dark on the upper part, at least the eyes are reddish (at the mature ones) 31
 Head with light parts on upper side, no red color at all 32
 
31.Abdomen red with black marksPyrrhosoma nymphula
 Abdomen colored black and yellowishErythromma najas
 
32.Lower part of eight segment of abdomen pricle-like and points backwards (fig. 19 and 20) 33
 Lower part of eight segment of abdomen not pricle-like35
 
33.Eight segment of abdomen with a pointed black mark (fig. 21), wing mark one-coloredEnallagma cyathigerum
 Eight segment of abdomen without a pointed black mark, wing mark two-coloredIschnura
 
34.Eight segment of abdomen black at the upper sideIschnura pumilio
 Eight segment of abdomen colored at the upper sideIschnura elegans
 
 
fig.17. Lestes sponsa, female, prothorax (side view)
fig.18. Lestes dryas, female, prothorax (side view)
fig.19. Enallagma cyathigerum, female, segment 7-10 of abdomen
fig.20. Ischnura elegans, female, segment 7-10 of abdomen
 
35.Marks at second segment of abdomen looks like fig. 22Coenagrion armatum
 Marks at second segment of the abdomen mostly reaches the edge of the fist segment 35
 
36.Upper part of prothorax back edge straight (fig. 23)Coenagrion hastulatum
 Upper part of prothorax back edge is not straight 36
 
37.Tubercle at prothorax indistinctive(fig. 24) 37
 Tubercle at prothorax large and distinctive(fig. 25 and 26) 38
 
38.Second segment of abdomen with a black line along lower side (fig. 28), tiny species Coenagrion johanssoni
 Second segment of abdomen without a black line along lower side(fig. 27) Coenagrion puella
 
39.Most upper tubercle at prothorax with a "corner" (fig 25), the whole upper part of the abdomen is dark, except for the eight segment segmentCoenagrion lunulatum
 Most upper tubercle at prothorax without a "corner" (fig 26), the upper part of the abdomen mostly with blue marks Coenagrion pulchellum
 
 
fig.21. Enallagma cyathigerum, female, eight segment of abdomen (top view)
fig.22. Coenagrion armatum, female, second segment of abdomen
fig.23. Coenagrion hastulatum, female, prothorax (rear view)
fig.24. Coenagrion puella, female, prothorax (side view)
fig.25. Coenagrion lunulatum, female, prothorax (side view)
fig.26. Coenagrion pulchellum, female, prothorax (side view)
fig.27. Coenagrion puella, female, second segment of abdomen (side view)
fig.28. Coenagrion johanssoni, female, second segment of abdomen (side view)

1997 by Tobias Ivarsson and Martin Peterson

Page updated June 21 2008
Copyright 2004-2008 Martin Peterson