The Emperor Dragonfly(Anax imperator), is a large and powerful species of hawker dragonfly of the family Aeshnidae, averaging 78 millimetres (3.1 in) in length. It is found mainly in Europe. As it wanders widely it can also be encountered elsewhere.
Males have a sky blue abdomen marked with a diagnostic black dorsal stripe and an apple green thorax. Females have a green thorax and abdomen. The male is highly territorial, and difficult to approach. The species lives by larger ponds, gravel pits, and slow rivers.
This powerful dragonfly is one of the largest species in Europe. They frequently fly high up into the sky in search of prey, which includes butterflies, Four-spotted Chasers and tadpoles; small prey is eaten on the wing. The females lay the eggs into plants such as pondweed, and always lay alone.