125 breeding species of Dragonflies and Damselflies have been recorded in Europe. Of these 80+ can be seen in France (compared with about 45 in the UK). In these pages I have listed only those species that I have seen myself, or for which I have good evidence of their presence in Languedoc. To find the details for a particular species you need to know a little about the naming conventions for Dragonflies and Damselflies (their taxonomy). The Order of insects to which Dragonflies and Damselflies belong is Odonata. Odonata is divided into two Suborders - Zygoptera (Damselflies) and Anisoptera (Dragonflies). The next taxonomic division used in this site is Family. Nine families are recorded from France, four of Damselflies and five of Dragonflies. The links panel to the left lists the families by their Latin names. These are summarised below.
|Coenagrionidae||All other damselflies|
|Libellulidae||Darters, Chasers and Skimmers|
If you follow a link to a family you will be presented with a list of species within that family. This list covers most species likely to be seen in Southern France excluding Corsica - but not necessarily seen by me! The list gives the Latin name, the accepted English name (or, if no such name is available, a name suggested by me in quotes) and the French name (mostly from the book "The Dragonflies of Europe" by R. R. Askew). From this list you can go to the page for the species. Here you will find a brief description of the species together with photographs (where available) and some observation notes.
The species pages are in preparation. When complete they will contain an account of all species that I see in Languedoc and elsewhere in France, together with photos where available.
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