The Common Darter Dragonfly (Sympetrum striolatum) is one of the smaller British species of dragonflies. The male is a rich bright red in colour
and the female varies from shades of green to orange and even red when mature. This individual has just emerged from life as a larvae living below water.
The Common Darter is on the wing from the middle of June here in the East of England and when I first became interested in wildlife and nature conservation, books stated “June – October” and it is the last dragonfly species you will see in the year. In the early 90’s I can remember recording this species into the first few days of November and this year 16 -17 years later my last date was 26th November and I expect within the next 5 years they will be recorded into the first few days of December.
In late autumn they are always looking for somewhere bright and warm to sit and absorb the suns heat