Series: Britain's Wildlife
224 pages, 321 colour photos and colour & b/w illustrations, 66 colour distribution maps
Britain's Dragonflies is the only comprehensive photographic field guide to the damselflies and dragonflies of Britain and Ireland. Written by two of Britain's foremost experts, this fully revised and updated edition features hundreds of stunning images and identification charts covering all 56 resident, migrant and former breeding species, and seven potential vagrants. The book focuses on identification - both of adults and larvae - highlighting the key features. Detailed species profiles provide concise information on identification, distribution, flight periods, behaviour, habitat, status and conservation.
Other sections cover biology; how to watch, photograph, record and monitor Dragonflies; conservation status and legislation; and introduced exotic species. This redesigned, updated and expanded edition features:
- Beautiful colour plates showing males, females, immatures and all colour forms for every species
- Over 450 stunning photographs and 550 illustrations
- Up-to-date species profiles and distribution maps
- Detailed, easy-to-use identification charts for adults and larvae
" [...] As the blurb rightly claims, this is the 'only comprehensive field guide to damselflies and dragonflies of Britain and Ireland'. If this wasn't enough to convince you to purchase a copy, allow me to give a brief overview of what it offers as a publication. The guide begins with a 50-page introduction to Britain's Odonata: biology, ecology, where to look, and how to view, photograph and identify are all tackled brilliantly and will ensure just about anyone – no matter how inexperienced – is prepared to tackle these often tricky subjects when out in the field. It is actually this section that contains one of my favourite features of the guide: the adult identification charts. As many will agree, the identification of the various blue damselfly species is tricky to say the least, but the guide's easy-to-use charts and diagrams ensure that comparing them is an entertaining learning curve rather than the boggy chore it could so easily be – abdomen, thorax and pronotum differences are all laid out in an understandable (and crucially for field identification, memorable) format. The same applies for the thorax and abdomen of the various hawker species.
The species accounts themselves are set out with an impressive clarity – the text, sectioned into identification, behaviour, habitat and population/conservation, is offset by an unambiguous range map and a graph illustrating flight times. Updated content includes recent records of rarer species: the inclusion of 2012's two Yellow-spotted Whiteface records from Suffolk is one example that leaps out. The best bit, though, is the quality of photographs – each species is illustrated by at least one of each sex (as well as age/colour form variations where applicable), with over 450 throughout the guide. [...]"
- Josh Jones, 03-04-2014, www.birdguides.com
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Dave Smallshire is a professional ecologist and former environmental adviser to the UK government, and is a trustee of the British Dragonfly Society.
Andy Swash is managing director of WILD"Guides" and World Wildlife Images, and author of a number of books, including Britain's Butterflies and Britain's Day-Flying Moths (both WILD"Guides"). They have combined their passion for dragonflies and knowledge gained over many years from lecturing and leading wildlife tours to develop this field guide.