DragonflyPix

Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea)

• English name: Downy Emerald
• German name: Falkenlibelle
• French name: Cordulie bronzée
• Dutch name: Smaragdlibel
• Swedish name: Guldtrollslända
• Norwegian name: Smaragdøyenstikker
• Finnish name: Vaskikorento
• Danish name: Grøn smaragdlibel
• Italian name: Smeralda bronzea
• Czech name: lesklice měděná
• Slovenian name: Močvirski lebduh
• Bulgarian name: Мъхеста зеленка

Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea)

Distribution map Cordulia aenea

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


General • a fairly large, dark, stocky-looking species which is fairly common in Central and Eastern Europe; rare in the British Isles, the far North and the South
Classification • suborder: Anisoptera (dragonflies); family: Corduliidae
Scientific name Cordulia aenea (Linnaeus, 1758)
Distribution • click or tap the Map button above
Notes • flies early in the year
  • territorial males inspect the water's edge looking for ovipositing females, alternating swift flight with brief hovering
  • cordulids are 'fliers': they spend a lot of time on the wing and seldom hang up for a rest
Habitat • ponds and lakes
Dimensions • typical body length: 47-55 mm; hindwing: 29-35 mm
Both sexesHead• the eyes are green (brown in immature animals)
 Thorax• the thorax is metallic dark green with bronze-brown reflections and covered in long hairs
 Abdomen• the abdomen is metallic dark green with, especially in the male, bronze-brown reflections
 Wings➤ the wings have orange patches at the base
MaleAbdomen➤ the abdomen is clearly club-shaped, being at its widest at S7-S8
FemaleAbdomen• the abdomen is only slightly club-shaped
  ➤ the underside of S3 bears a large white patch
  ➤ the abdomen does not have a long vulvar scale
 Wings• immature females may have extensively orange-tinted wings
Photographs • most of our photos below were made in the Netherlands, Sweden and Greece

Line DrawingLineDrawing: the male's appendages, the male's abdomen and the female's abdomen in dorsal view.

Cordulia aenea (left), Somatochlora metallica (centre) and S. meridionalis (right); vulvar scale
Note: In C. aenea the vulvar scale is small and does not protrude.

Downy Emerald (Cordulia aenea)
Male appendages in dorsal view
Drawing by Ruth Ilka Nüß
© 2013 Lehmann & Nüß and DragonflyPix.com

Downy Emerald (Cordulia aenea)
Male abdomen in dorsal view
Drawing by Ruth Ilka Nüß
© 2013 Lehmann & Nüß and DragonflyPix.com

Downy Emerald (Cordulia aenea)
Female abdomen in dorsal 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.

Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 1 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♀

1 / 20; PhotoID: Dr844 13/05/2011 13:33 Greece F8 1/200 180mm ISO400 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 2 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♂

2 / 20; PhotoID: Dr845 20/07/2017 12:36 Finland F8 1/320 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 3 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♂

3 / 20; PhotoID: Dr846 17/06/2011 14:23 Austria F8 1/200 180mm ISO400 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 4 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♂

4 / 20; PhotoID: Dr862 25/04/2011 10:01 Netherlands F5.6 1/800 180mm ISO400 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 5 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♀

5 / 20; PhotoID: Dr863 14/05/2013 15:19 Netherlands F8 1/30 180mm ISO200 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 6 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♂

6 / 20; PhotoID: Dr864 19/06/2016 10:28 Sweden F8 1/500 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 7 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♀

7 / 20; PhotoID: Dr895 22/04/2011 11:25 Netherlands F8 1/40 180mm ISO200 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 8 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ⚤

8 / 20; PhotoID: Dr924 22/06/2016 11:44 Sweden F10 1/400 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 9 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♀

9 / 20; PhotoID: Dr925 13/05/2011 13:44 Greece F6.3 1/250 180mm ISO400 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 10 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♀

10 / 20; PhotoID: Dr926 05/07/2008 13:18 Finland F5.6 1/500 180mm ISO400 Canon40D -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 11 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♀

11 / 20; PhotoID: Dr927 13/05/2011 13:25 Greece F8 1/250 180mm ISO400 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 12 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ⚤

12 / 20; PhotoID: Dr928 23/06/2016 10:29 Sweden F8 1/400 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 13 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♂

13 / 20; PhotoID: Dr934 21/06/2016 17:01 Sweden F8 1/125 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 14 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ⚤

14 / 20; PhotoID: Dr1043 23/06/2016 12:16 Sweden F8 1/320 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 15 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♂

15 / 20; PhotoID: Dr1044 04/05/2009 14:07 Netherlands F5.6 1/180 180mm ISO200 Canon50D -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 16 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♂

16 / 20; PhotoID: Dr1047 13/05/2009 11:32 Germany F5.6 1/60 180mm ISO200 Canon50D -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 17 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♂

17 / 20; PhotoID: Dr1048 14/05/2013 14:28 Netherlands F8 1/350 180mm ISO400 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 18 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♂

18 / 20; PhotoID: Dr1049 15/05/2013 12:33 Netherlands F8 1/90 180mm ISO400 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 19 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♀

19 / 20; PhotoID: Dr1325 08/05/2010 14:08 Netherlands F8 1/45 180mm ISO200 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
Cordulia aenea, thumbnail 20 / 20
Smaragdlibel (Cordulia aenea) ♂

20 / 20; PhotoID: Dr1490 13/05/2011 15:07 Greece F8 1/160 180mm ISO200 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF