Back to list

Banded demoiselle

Calopteryx splendens

Photo: Banded demoiselle
Weights and measures
Length from 35 to 40 mm
Wingspan from 60 to 70 mm
State of endangerment
Non Endangered
Animal description
The Banded Demoiselle (Calopteryx splendens) is a strikingly beautiful species of damselfly that graces the waterways of Europe and into parts of Asia. This enchanting insect is part of the Calopterygidae family, known for the vibrant and metallic colors of its members, and the Banded Demoiselle is no exception, showcasing a blend of brilliant hues and delicate structures that make it a marvel of the natural world.

Adult Banded Demoiselles typically measure between 45 to 48 millimeters in length, with a wingspan that can reach up to 60 millimeters. What sets the males apart is their distinctive dark blue-black band across the central part of their wings, from which the species derives its common name. This band contrasts strikingly with the rest of the wing, which is a transparent, shimmering blue or green, depending on how light reflects off it. The body of the male is a metallic blue, further enhancing its allure. Females, on the other hand, display a more subtle beauty with their metallic green bodies and completely green-tinged, translucent wings, lacking the pronounced band of their male counterparts.

The Banded Demoiselle thrives in a variety of freshwater habitats, including slow-moving rivers, streams, and sometimes lakes, as long as there is an abundance of vegetation. This vegetation plays a crucial role in their lifecycle, serving as a habitat for the larvae and a perch for the adults. The larvae, which are aquatic, are predators, feeding on a variety of small invertebrates. After emerging from the water, the adults transition to a terrestrial diet, feeding on small flying insects.

Mating and reproduction are visually captivating rituals for the Banded Demoiselles. Males perform aerial displays to attract females, showcasing their vivid wings and agility. Once a pair is formed, mating takes place on vegetation near the water. The female then lays her eggs on submerged plants, ensuring the next generation's start in a suitable aquatic environment.

Observing Banded Demoiselles can be a serene experience, as they are often found fluttering gently along sun-dappled streams or resting on vegetation. Their presence is indicative of good water quality, making them an important species for monitoring environmental health.

The life cycle of the Banded Demoiselle, from egg to larva to adult, spans about two years, although the adult stage lasts only a few months. During this time, they play a vital role in the ecosystem, both as predators and prey, contributing to the biodiversity of their habitats.

Despite facing threats from habitat destruction and pollution, the Banded Demoiselle is currently not considered endangered. Conservation efforts aimed at preserving natural waterways and their vegetation are crucial to ensuring the survival of this and many other species dependent on such habitats.

In conclusion, the Banded Demoiselle is more than just an insect; it is a testament to the intricate beauty and complexity of nature. Its presence enhances the biodiversity of freshwater ecosystems and serves as a reminder of the importance of conserving natural habitats.
Similar Animals
New photos of animals