Variable Damselfly

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Variable Damselfly
Fledermaus-Azurjungfer Coenagrion pulchellum 1.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Odonata
Suborder: Zygoptera
Family: Coenagrionidae
Genus: Coenagrion
Species: C. pulchellum
Binomial name
Coenagrion pulchellum
(Vander Linden, 1825)

The Variable Damselfly or Variable Bluet (Coenagrion pulchellum) is a European damselfly. Despite its name, it is not the only blue damselfly prone to variable patterning.

Its behaviour is much like that of the Azure Damselfly; it usually stays close to vegetation. Immatures are often found in adjacent meadows or uncut grassy areas.


male damselfly
Male C. pulchellum

The male Variable Damselfly has a distinctive "wine glass" marking on the second segment of the abdomen. This is a black U-shaped mark with a black line joining the segment's narrow terminal black band.[1] (This distinguishes it from the Azure Damselfly which has the U-shape but no line connecting it to the terminal band.)[1]


The Variable Damselfly occurs throughout Europe. Scattered and uncommon in mainland Britain but widespread and common in Ireland.[2]


  1. ^ a b Brooks, Steve (1997). Field Guide to the Dragonflies and Damselflies of Great Britain and Ireland. British Wildlife Publishing. ISBN 0-9531399-0-5. 
  2. ^ "Variable Damselfly". British Dragonfly Society. Retrieved 27 May 2011. 

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