Blue Eyed Hawker (Aeshna affinis)

/ / Terrestrial Inverts


Individuals from the genus Aeshna are often referred to as hawker dragonflies.  In flight A. affinis is often confused with A. mixta.  The total length of A. affinis is between 57 and 66 mm.  The males and females of the species look different.  For example the males are chiefly black-blue and the sides of their thorax are green with fine black lines and bright blue eyes.  The females, and the younger males, are usually marked with green or yellow, however the females may develop male colors.  The females have greenish eyes  (1).


Males fly about chest height, usually moving over a small area, often perching and not easily disturbed, female and male oviposite the eggs in tandem. Species is mainly seen from May to August (1).


It breeds in standing water bodies that dry up during summer (2).  Areas that are overgrown with low rushes, bulrushes or reeds are also preferred (1).


Permanently present around the Mediterranean, rare in much of Iberia and North Africa (1).


Description written by Aino Helakallio (2009)

(1)   Dijkstra. K. (2006) Field guide to Dragonflies of Britain and Europe, British Wildlife Publishing, Gillingham

(2)   British Dragonfly Society (2007) Aeshna affinis, Southern Migrant Hawker [online] Available: [date accessed: 12/05/2009]