Field Guide to Dragonflies & Damselflies
Of Great Britain and Ireland
By Steve Brooks, Illustrated by Richard Lewington
Published by British Wildlife Publishing, 2002
If you are anywhere near water in England this summer its quite likely that you will encounter dragonflies and damselflies. A few summers ago I was lucky enough to have a job surveying the endangered Southern Damselfly Coenagrion mercurialis in the Itchen Valley, and ever since I have developed a fascination for these mini beasts.
The Illustrations in this book are particularly beautiful, and each species is covered in detail sufficient for a field guide - this is very much a practical book, rather than the coffee table style of 'field guide'. Each species is also given a distribution map as well as a description of some of the best sites to see them; for pond dippers there is also a key to the larvae. This guide makes fascinating summer reading for anyone curious about these insects, and presents an opportunity to spot endangered species in your own back garden.
Review by Peter Taylor