This Darter can be locally common and can be seen in quite large numbers when a suitable breeding site has been found. It is restricted to south and east of the United Kingdom as well as being quite common in Ireland.
The Ruddy Darter is a late season species and can be seen on the wing from late June until October. However it is at its best in late July and August, when mature and before the wings become tatty.
They prefer shallow areas of still water with well vegetated margins. This species can be confused with the Common Darter but is distinguishable by the darker eyes and the abdomen that is a much deeper pillar box red. The other main key identifying feature is that the legs are all black and lack the light central line of the Common variety.
The females are far less common and are straw coloured with black abdominal markings. Its black legs are once again the key identitying feature from other similar species, notably the Common Darter.
The female is noticably scarce when compared to the male and locating a suitable subject to photograph may be far more challenging.