COMMON BLUE DAMSELFLY
There are loads of these on the riverbank path between Gallows Hill and Knotford Nook, but they can turn up in your Otley garden, even if you don’t have a pond. The females are often paler, but sometimes don’t look like the male at all, so that they aren’t too vulnerable when they fly near the water for reproduction. The male is a pinky brown when he first emerges – it takes him a few days to acquire his brilliant blue hue. The bulk of their lives, though, is spent at the larval stage in the water, and they are sensitive to pesticides there that have drained off the fields.