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Azure Damselfly

Coenagrion puella


The azure damselfy (Coenagrion puella), easy to confuse with the Common blue damselfy (Eanallagma cyathigerum). See the discussion in comments!


Seen at the same protected pond as the previous spotting.


Easy to confuse. The common blue damselfly is more blue than black, and the second segment of its thorax has a distinctive spot with a line below connecting to the third segment.

No species ID suggestions


DanielePralong 6 years ago

bart.creemers thank you so much for stopping by! Your explanations don't confuse me more, they're very clear! The variable bluet or variable damselfly (Coenagrion pulchellum) is reported to occur in my area but we'll go with the statistically obvious and I'll update the ID as C. puella. Thanks again! If someone disagrees this discussion is here to serve as a guide.

bart.creemers 6 years ago

Daniele. It is not blue damselfy because the blue 'shoulder' bar/line of the thorax is not wider than the black bar below it. Also on the side of the thorax there shouldn't be a (clear) black stripe. I would go for Coenagrion puella.
There is another similar kind, Coenagrion pulchellum (variable bluet) which is mostly rare (but I don't know how it is in your region). Both male forms (I wouldn't try females ;) ) are characterised by a black rings at the base for segments 3-5 of the abdomen and 2 long lines/spikes from the base of the segments to the front along the side.

(Male) C. pulchellum has 3 main (field)characteristics that differ in most cases from C. puella, but there are rare forms of both that are more similar. The 3 things you can look for in case of C. pulchellum are:
1. segment 6 of abdomen at least 3/4 black (can als happen with C. puella, but mostly not)
2. Figure on segment 2 mostly connected to base, forming a Y rather than U (very rarely also C. puella has that)
3. In most cases C. pulchellum has a blue exclamation mark (broken line) on the 'shoulder', but sometimes not.

For all three characteristics your photo shows a typical C. puella. I hope this helped. Or did I cunfuse you more?

DanielePralong 6 years ago

Thanks taka.ita. Distinguishing these to on the basis of pics gives me nightmares! Can you educate me and tell me what your criterias are?

taka.ita 6 years ago

Funny, but I'd ID this one as Coenagrion puella.

It is certainly a Coenagrion species.

Châtel-Saint-Denis, Fribourg - Freiburg, Switzerland

Lat: 46.51, Long: 6.95

Spotted on May 30, 2011
Submitted on May 30, 2011

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