Many species within the order Odonata

[Credit: Rosana Prada]
[Credit: Rosana Prada]
[Credit: Gustaaf Prins]
[Credit: Gustaaf Prins]
[Credit: Jans Canon]
[Credit: Jans Canon]

Host Plants:

Where Found:

Worldwide except in Arctic environments


These beautiful insects are often seen darting through the garden on warm summer days, stopping to rest on flowers or branches. Damselflies have much thinner, ligher bodies than dragonflies. Both dragonflies and damselflies are most common near water, because they spend their larval phase in ponds and streams.

Beneficial Because:

As young nymphs, damselflies consume numerous small organisms that live in water, including small tadpoles. As adults, they use their acute vision to catch small insects on the wing by grabbing them with their feet. They are tremendous consumers of mosquitoes.

Food and Habitat:

Many damselflies spend two years as nymphs, during which time they must have a pond, river or stream. Bodies of water that include dense vegetation around the edges are ideal, because the plants provide cover for the slow-growing nymphs.

Attracting More:

Plant a diverse range of flowering plants to attract flying insects that damselflies will hunt. A small to medium sized pond will also help to attract damselflies to a garden.

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