The Southern Damselfly Coenagrion mercuriale is the smallest and most delicate of the British blue damselflies. In 1994 it was known in England from Dorset, Devon and Hampshire. It was once more widely distributed and has declined considerably over the last century. Elsewhere, C. mercuriale occurs in central, southern and south-western Europe and northern Africa, with a different subspecies in Italy and N. Africa. The biology and habitat requirements of C. mercuriale are now relatively well established so it is possible to formulate realistic management plans. This project aimed to write a management plan for C. mercurial on the Dorset Heaths, to establish the whereabouts of the larval sites which could be targeted for mangement, and to set up a system to monitor the effectiveness of management.
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