DragonflyPix

Calopteryx splendens

• English name: Banded Demoiselle
• German name: Gebänderte Prachtlibelle
• French name: Caloptéryx éclatant
• Dutch name: Weidebeekjuffer
• Swedish name: Blåbandad jungfruslända
• Norwegian name: Blåbåndvannymfe
• Finnish name: Immenkorento
• Danish name: Blåbåndet pragtvandnymfe
• Italian name: Splendente comune
• Czech name: motýlice lesklá
• Slovenian name: Pasasti bleščavec
• Bulgarian name: Поясно ромолниче

Calopteryx splendens

Distribution map Calopteryx splendens

Map data based on J.-P. Boudot & V. J. Kalkman (eds.),
Atlas of the European Dragonflies and Damselflies


General • a large species, common throughout much of Europe but absent from the South of France and Iberia and from much of Scandinavia
Classification • suborder: Zygoptera (damselflies); family: Calopterygidae
Scientific name Calopteryx splendens (Harris, 1782)
Distribution • click or tap the Map button above
Notes • its flight is fluttery and butterfly-like
  • males engage in a dazzling display flight to attract females into their territories
  • to demonstrate the suitability of an ovipositing site males sit down on the water and allow the current to carry them by that site while 'flashing' the coloured underside of their abdomen tips at the females
  • both males and females hold territories at the water
Habitat • fairly wide, slow-flowing and sunny streams and rivers
Dimensions • typical body length: 45-48 mm; hindwing: 28-31 mm
Both sexesWings• the wings are fairly pointed and narrow
MaleThorax• the thorax is metallic dark blue
 Abdomen• the abdomen is metallic dark blue
  • the underside of the last three abdominal segments is yellowish white
 Wings• the wings lack a (pseudo-)pterostigma
  ➤ a dark band runs through the wings and extends from the node almost all the way through to the wing tip
FemaleThorax• the thorax is metallic dark green
 Abdomen➤ the top of the abdomen (including the last three segments) is metallic dark green
 Wings➤ the wings are translucent green and bear a white pseudopterostigma close to the wing tip
Photographs • many of our photos below were made in Tuscany and show the subspecies C. s. caprai
  • those photos made on Crete show the subspecies C. s. cretensis
  • those photos made in Turkey show the subspecies C. s. amasina
  • two of the photos below show androchrome females, i.e. females with male colouration (but with a white pseudopterostigma)

Line DrawingLineDrawing: the female's head and thorax in lateral view.

Calopteryx splendens; wing, male
Note: In some subspecies the dark wing band is much narrower, leaving a wide translucent wingtip.

Calopteryx splendens; wing, female
Note: The pseudopterostigma in the narrow green wing is positioned quite close to the tip.

Banded Demoiselle (Calopteryx splendens)
Female head and thorax in lateral view
Drawing by Ruth Ilka Nüß
© 2013 Lehmann & Nüß and DragonflyPix.com

Click on a thumbnail to display the photograph (at 1200 x 800 pixels) in a new window.

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Calopteryx splendens

1 / 20; PhotoID: Da002 27/04/2009 11:15 Italy F8 1/60 180mm ISO200 Canon50D -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

2 / 20; PhotoID: Da003 29/06/2015 13:22 Greece F8 1/100 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

3 / 20; PhotoID: Da004 07/06/2008 12:50 Italy F5.6 1/45 180mm ISO200 Canon40D -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

4 / 20; PhotoID: Da005 02/06/2015 12:45 Italy F8 1/320 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

5 / 20; PhotoID: Da006 30/06/2015 17:25 Greece F8 1/100 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

6 / 20; PhotoID: Da007 02/06/2015 12:56 Italy F8 1/160 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

7 / 20; PhotoID: Da008 02/06/2015 12:56 Italy F8 1/160 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

8 / 20; PhotoID: Da013 21/08/2013 09:09 Italy F8 1/250 180mm ISO200 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

9 / 20; PhotoID: Da092 04/09/2016 10:03 Italy F8 1/100 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

10 / 20; PhotoID: Da093 26/05/2015 11:16 Italy F8 1/100 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

11 / 20; PhotoID: Da094 27/04/2009 11:25 Italy F5.6 1/60 180mm ISO200 Canon50D -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

12 / 20; PhotoID: Da099 29/06/2015 13:23 Greece F8 1/50 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Calopteryx splendens, thumbnail 13 / 20
Calopteryx splendens

13 / 20; PhotoID: Da100 28/05/2009 17:57 Turkey F5.6 1/30 180mm ISO100 Canon50D -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

14 / 20; PhotoID: Da101 07/07/2010 13:19 Greece F5.6 1/125 180mm ISO200 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

15 / 20; PhotoID: Da117 23/06/2010 11:34 Italy F5.6 1/350 180mm ISO200 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

16 / 20; PhotoID: Da118 13/09/2006 13:44 Italy F8 1/125 180mm ISO200 Canon30D -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

17 / 20; PhotoID: Da176 12/06/2013 12:49 Turkey F8 1/125 180mm ISO200 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

18 / 20; PhotoID: Da204 18/07/2005 10:08 Italy F5.6 1/250 180mm ISO100 Canon10D -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

19 / 20; PhotoID: Da258 21/05/2009 11:35 Italy F8 1/125 180mm ISO200 Canon50D -Crop -Flash MF
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Calopteryx splendens

20 / 20; PhotoID: Da309 19/05/2009 12:16 Italy F5.6 1/90 180mm ISO100 Canon50D -Crop -Flash MF