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34 species of Odonata  have been recorded in Shropshire comprising 22 dragonfly species and 12 damselfly species.

Each species page provides detailed information on:

  • identification
  • local and national status
  • local distribution
  • habitat
  • behaviour
  • flight period
  • where to see in Shropshire
  • links to national distribution

Local Status

Current local status is given according to the criteria used in The Dragonflies of Shropshire (Lockton et al., 1996):

Rare– present at 3 or fewer breeding sites in the county
Scarce– present at between 3-10 breeding sites in the county
Local– present at 11-50 breeding sites in the county
Common– present (or thought to be) at more than 50 breeding sites, often very abundant in these

National Status

National status is that given in Britain’s Dragonflies (Smallshire & Swash, 2014). In addition those species appearing on the Odonata Red Data List for Great Britain (Daguet et al., 2008) or the Ireland Red List (Nelson et al., 2011) in categories of concern are highlighted.

Local Distribution Maps

The up to date local distribution maps are based on records submitted  to the Shropshire Ecological Data Network (SEDN). OS Map data is supplied and used under licence from Shropshire Council © Crown Copyright 2016 OS 100049049.

All other references used in the species descriptions are detailed in the list below.

Please note that a number of  sites are mentioned in the Shropshire Distribution text, particularly with regards to historic records. Many of these sites are private and present day access is only suggested to those sites listed in the section ‘where to see in Shropshire’.


Brooks, S. and Cham, S. (2014). Field Guide to the Dragonflies & Damselflies of Great Britain and Ireland. Oxford: British Wildlife Publishing.

Butler, S. (1982). Dragonflies of Shropshire and their Distribution. Shropshire: Caradoc and Severn Valley Filed Club.

Cham, S., Nelson, B., Parr, A., Prentice, S., Smallshire, D. and Taylor, P. (2014). Atlas of Dragonflies in Britain and Ireland. Telford: Field Studies Council.

Daguet, C.A., French, G.C. and Taylor, P. (2008). The Odonata Red Data List for Great Britain. Species Status 11: 1-34. Peterborough: Joint Nature Conservation Committee.

Lockton, A., Bellis, S., Cheeseborough, I. and Whild, S. (1996) The Dragonflies of Shropshire. Shrewsbury: Wildscan Ecological Consultants.

Nelson, B., Ronayne, C. and Thompson, R. (2011) Ireland Red List No.6: Damselflies and Dragonflies (Odonata). National Parks and Wildlife Service, Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government, Dublin, Ireland.

Smallshire, D. and Swash, A. (2014) Britain’s Dragonflies: A field guide to the damselflies and dragonflies of Britain and Ireland. 3rd ed. Oxfordshire: Princeton University Press.