Pyrrhosoma nymphula (Sulzer, 1776)
Large Red Damsel

Type locality: Europe, no locality data available.


The only Pyrrhosoma present in Africa. Somewhat larger and more robust than Enallagma cyathigerum. Both sexes have a red abdomen, with only the last segments (especially S7-9) largely black. The thorax is black with yellow sides and antehumeral stripes in young specimens, the latter becoming red with age. [Adapted from Dijkstra & Lewington 2006]

Habitat description

Streams, headwaters and possibly seeps and springs in open landscapes, open areas in forest or shaded by gallery forest. Often with emergent and aquatic vegetation, submerged roots and/or coarse detritus. From 0 to 1900 m above sea level.


confirmed: Morocco

Map citation: Clausnitzer, V., K.-D.B. Dijkstra, R. Koch, J.-P. Boudot, W.R.T. Darwall, J. Kipping, B. Samraoui, M.J. Samways, J.P. Simaika & F. Suhling, 2012. Focus on African Freshwaters: hotspots of dragonfly diversity and conservation concern. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 10: 129-134.


  • Sulzer, J.H. (1776). Die Wasserjungfer in, Dr. Sulzers abgekürzte Geschichte der Insecten nach dem Linnaeischen System. Winterthur : H. Steiner. pp. 166-169.

Citation: Dijkstra, K.-D.B (editor). African Dragonflies and Damselflies Online. [2024-06-20].