||Brownett mentions the River Swere in north
Oxfordshire as a stronghold to at least the early
1990's . More recently, there is a cluster of
records from the extreme north of the County, with a
scattering from various sites in the south,
including Letcombe Brook in East Hanney (2004), the
rivers Ock and Windrush, as well as the Thames at
Tadpole Bridge . There are 2010 records from
Waterperry Wood and Stanton St John, both in the
north of the County. In 2011/12 there were records
from other sites in this general area - Waterperry
Wood/Bernwood Forest and Otmoor. In 2017, there were
again a few records from Otmoor. This species appears
to be expanding its range in the county, especially to
||A common and widespread species, especially along
the river Thames.
Occurs intermittently at a small number of sites in
the county. In 2016 Radley Lakes is the only known site
for this species in the County. Otmoor
was previously the premier site but there were no records
from there in 2015 and 2016. In
September 2012, there were new site records of three
at Shellingford Pit, with a further record for 2013
and a few in 2014. There have been none since caused
by the sad total desiccation of this site. There is a scattering of odd records from a
few other sites, such as Dry Sandford Pit .
Another recently discovered site is Faringdon Folly
Park Pond, that held small numbers in a very localised
area in 2017.
Reasonably common in suitable habitat, i.e. well
vegetated slow moving rivers such as the Thames,
especially near Goring railway bridge. In the 2015
there were more records than usual from other
scattered sites including Chimney Meadows and the
Cherwell Valley (between Grimsbury Reservoir and the
||Large Red Damselfly
Quite widely distributed in the County and usually the
first species of the new season to be reported. Sites include Otmoor, Farmoor
(Pinkhill), Dry Sandford Pit, Faringdon Folly Park
||One of the commonest damselflies in the County.
||Scarce Blue-tailed Damselfly
||Brownett mentions records from the Lower Windrush
Valley Gravel Pits in the early 1990's when they
were being actively dug . There are more recent
records from the same area, up to 2000  by J M
Campbell. There have been no records since then. It
is unclear if this species still survives in
Oxfordshire, although this is at least possible given
continuing gravel extraction in the County. Access to such areas is
however very difficult.
Used to be reasonably numerous at Dry Sandford Pit, with a
reported spread to the nearby BBOWT reserve
of Parsonage Moor . However recently numbers have been
very low at these sites. This is a very isolated
population, and I have heard a suggestion they might
have been introduced here several years ago.
||A numerous species, but needs careful examination
to separate from the commoner Common Blue.
Particularly abundant along the Roman Road at Otmoor,
early in the season where hundreds can be found on a
||Only known from a
few locations in the
County, which tend to change. It
was seen in 2010 and previously  in the Cothill/
Parsonage Moor area, but
between 2013 and 2016 there have been no records from that site.
In 2017, another was found. Roger Wyatt had been monitoring a second site near Yarnton
for several years, but in 2013 he found only 4, down
on previous totals and there have been no records
In 2015, Martin
Wackenier found several in a small area by the River
Thames close to Barton Fields nr Abingdon. They
appeared to be concentrated near a pool at
N51.669995,W1.260927. This colony was still present in
2016 and 2017, and in 2016 Wayne Bull located another site at Iffley Meadows.
||Common Blue Damselfly
||Probably the commonest damselfly in Oxfordshire.
||Occurs quite widely at many sites.
||Small Red-eyed Damselfly
Currently only known at a few sites
|Shellingford Pit held varying numbers since
at least 2006 until 2016, but in 2017 the site was
dry with no records. 2010 was a good year for this species with
well over 10 from Shellingford, and with a new site record
from Radley Lakes . It has also been recorded
from Didcot Power Station/Appleford Pit .
It may occur elsewhere, but there have been
few records north of the River Thames, even in
apparently suitable locations such as Tar Lakes, near
Witney. In 2017, the first record for VC23 was from
Blenheim Lake (southern end) and the best site was
Faringdon Folly Park Pond where Bill Haynes recorded
up to 60 in early August.
||Small Red Damselfly
||Regular records from the
special habitat in the Cothill NNR/Parsonage Moor area from 1910 to 2015!
. Cothill NNR continues to be more productive
than Parsonage Moor for this species.
Some evidence of a decline since 2012.
||An elusive species localised to suitable habitat
such as the Thames, where it is reputed to occur
along its full length in the County, albeit at a low
density on some stretches. The best known site is the
railway bridge south of Goring, although even this are not guaranteed
to produce sightings. The Thames at Little Whittenham
Woods gave a
remarkable count of 14 on 9 May 2009 .
The 2017 BDS Clubtail count produced only a handful of
records of adults/recent emergents, with only one
upstream of Oxford at Tadpole Bridge. Larger numbers
of exuviae were found, especially downstream from
Finding an adult of this species is
one of the greatest challenges for the Odonata
enthusiast in the county!
Increasingly reported and spreading to new
site, early in the season, is Otmoor where it has
been seen in small numbers since 1998 . In 2010
and subsequently it was found at Radley Lakes by
Wayne Bull. In 2013 there were new site records from
the Pinkhill reserve at Farmoor and Whitecross Green
Wood. In 2015, there were reports from more new
sites - the Barton
Fields area of the River Thames, to the south of Radley
Lakes and the Parsonage Moor BBOWT reserve near
Cothill. Since then further first site records
have included the Trap Grounds in Oxford (2017).
due to absence of suitable habitat
The last confirmed record given by Brownett  was in
1983. There are just a handful of records since 2000
in the NBN database , from sites including
Lashford Lane Fen, Parsonage Moor and Iffley
Meadows. With no records since 2004, this must be
one of the rarest dragonflies in Oxforshire. There
is potential for confusion with other hawkers
(Migrant and Southern).
||One of the easiest hawkers to find in Oxfordshire.
Visits gardens regularly.
||A commonly encountered hawker, but slightly less
so than Southern.
||Can be numerous in late, good summers.
||Again a widespread species in Oxfordshire,
occurring at plenty of sites.
||Records from Appleford Pit in 2006 (2), Radley
Lakes in 2006 & 2007 and at Shellingford Pit in
2008. Quite remarkably this last record was one of
only 8 in the entire country for 2008 ! After a
few blank years, the next record was on 31 July 2011
at Pit 60, Standlake Gravel Pits. Since then there
have been no records.
Golden Ringed Dragonfly
Golden Ringed Dragonflies are normally associated with
northern and western areas of Britain, but there
is a small breeding population in the Bracknell/Crowthorne
area of Berks. A wandering individual from here may
account for a remarkable record of one from Cholsey on
25 May 2012, seen by an observer experienced with this
large, difficult to mistake species. There is a more
recent record from just over the county border in
Bucks in July 2014, at a similar distance from the
Berkshire breeding area.
The NBN database  also
contains a number of records from the early 2000s from
the west of the county, which seem doubtful.
||Downy Emeralds favour ponds or small lakes with
surrounding trees. Brownett mentions this is a
scarce species with a northerly bias in the county.
Records since 2000 are from a scattering of sites,
mainly in the north of the county such as Rousham
Ponds, Ditchley Park and Standford St Martin .
However, there are a few records from sites in the
south, including the lake at Buckland House (no
public access) and the ponds at Little Whittenham
Wood (but not since 2001) . In May 2010, there
were records of males on Otmoor. As a result, other records for that site emerged for
2002, 2003 and 2004 . In 2010 it was also found
by Wayne Bull at a new site - Radley Lakes. There
were also records for this site in 2011 and 2012. In
2016, it was reported from Barton Pool by observers
looking for the Variable Damselflies.
||Can be found at a number of sites, including
Otmoor and Shellingford Pit in good years.
|The Dragonfly Recording Network (DRN) ,
contains one single unconfirmed
record from Cassington Gravel Pits in 1986 by an
un-named observer. Not mentioned in  and I doubt
this record would have been accepted if it were a
However in 2014, there was a confirmed
record of one male on Otmoor on 6 July by Terry
Sherlock and Jason Coppock, with some
photos to support
the ID. Given its increasing range in the country,
more records may occur in future.
||Widespread & numerous
||Can be very abundant at some sites, e.g. Otmoor.
||Likes muddy edges of ponds etc. Not difficult to
find in the County, e.g. Otmoor, Pinkhill and
Standlake Pit 60.
||This is generally an acid water species and probably a
recent colonist. It now occurs at Dry Sandford Pit
(since 2006) and Parsonage Moor/Cothill NNR.
||This is also usually an acid species, but the most
recent record is from as long ago as 1986 at Hill
End Camp. There are also a few even older records
from Cothill, but none recently, suggesting this
species is extinct in the County.
||A reasonably common species in Oxfordshire. I have
even seen it in some surprising habitats such as the
stagnant canal near Wantage.
||Brownett mentions 4 records, the most recent being
from Clattercote Reservoir in 1995, which coincided
with an unprecedented influx of this species into
Britain. More recently, there was a record by G
Hopwood at Aston Rowant on 27 August 2006 ,
which again coincided with an influx of this
||Brownett mentions just 1 record from 1976. There
are two more recent records, from Otmoor in June
2006 and Radley Lakes in June 2007 . The 4th
record was from Radley on 13th September 2012 by
Wayne Bull, in a year during which there were
several records from Crookham/Greenham Commons in
||Widespread & abundant
||Surely the County's most numerous dragonfly, later
in the season!