This is another early season dragonfly that can be seen in locally large numbers from early to mid May. Its flight season is long and can last until mid August.
It derives its name from the four spots, one located centrally on the front leading edge of each of its wings. Early specimens can display vivid colouring as can be seen in the slides above. These colours dull with age.
This Chaser is widely distributed in all of the United Kingdom and is a common sight on all manner of still- water, canals, bogs and slow flowing rivers.
Both sexes are very similar in appearance as can be seen in the images above. Their main colouring is an orange / brown when immature, this fades with age to an olive / dull brown in mature specimens. The wings are clear and have dark patches at their base. The four abdominal segments towards the tail are partially black.
The best way to tell the sexes apart is to closely examine the anal appendages. The males meet initially and then diverge, the females are more or less parallel to one another.