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NParks Dragonfly Watch

Enjoy spotting dragonflies and damselflies, or interested to learn more about them?

Join us for the Dragonfly Watch, organised as part of the NParks Community in Nature Biodiversity Watch series, and contribute to a citizen science study on these amazing flying predators.

You can also learn more about our common dragonflies and damselflies through our interactive e-learning module, accessible via Internet Explorer or Mozilla Firefox browser.


Registration for Dragonfly Watch Jul/Aug 2019 is now closed. Please join us for the next round in February 2020! 


What is the Dragonfly Watch all about?

The Dragonfly Watch is a citizen science initiative to involve the community in collecting valuable information about dragonflies and damselflies in our parks, gardens and reserves.

With the data collected from survey transects from the various parks around Singapore, we can start piecing together information about where our dragonflies and damselflies are found and in what numbers! This information will contribute towards better park management and conservation measures.

*For simplicity, we are using the broad term of ‘dragonfly’ here to refer to both dragonflies and damselflies unless otherwise specified.


Results from 2018 Dragonfly Watch

How can I participate?

Anyone aged 12 and above can sign up and volunteer with us.

A training workshop on dragonfly identification and survey techniques will be organised for beginner and intermediate dragonfly-watchers before the survey. You will be assigned a survey site closer to the date of the survey.

Registration is now CLOSED. Do join us for the next round of Dragonfly Watch in February 2020!

What happens after I have signed up?

  1. We will email you the details about the training (for beginner or intermediate dragonfly-watchers), or to confirm your sign-up (for advanced dragonfly-watchers).
  2. Attend the training on your chosen date. Each training session is about three hours long and covers basic survey and dragonfly-watching techniques. You will also learn how to identify 23 common dragonflies and damselflies in Singapore. The session will include a hands-on practical session at the Singapore Botanic Gardens.
  3. One week before the Dragonfly Watch, we will send you information about your designated site and locations of waterbodies for your survey.
  4. Head down to your site on any day between 27 July and 4 August (from 9 am to 5 pm) and conduct the count at your designated transect. The survey should take no more than three hours and can be conducted anytime from 9 am to 5 pm. The following windows are recommended:
    • 9 am to 12 pm
    • 2 pm to 5 pm
  5. Send the results of your survey to us either using the online survey form or email us a scanned copy of your datasheet!

If you have any questions, please email us at with “DW_July2019” in the email subject.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)


  1. I don’t have any dragonfly-watching experience. Can I still participate?

    Yes! We will provide training at our workshops, which will cover basic survey and dragonfly-watching techniques, as well as the identification of 23 common dragonflies and damselflies in Singapore. This will enable you to carry out the basic surveys in our parks. With practice, you will be able to identify more species and become a true-blue dragonfly-watcher!


  2. Do I need any special equipment?

    The survey is designed to accommodate surveyors without any specialised equipment such as a camera or a pair of binoculars. All you need is a datasheet and a pen, or a smartphone with the SGBioAtlas app. You are encouraged to bring along a camera and/or a pair of binoculars though!


  3. Is it compulsory for me to attend the training workshops?

    You will be required to attend the training to familiarise yourself with the common species, especially for first-timers. The training sessions will include lessons on how to conduct the surveys properly and instructions for the Dragonfly Watch itself. Experienced dragonfly-watchers are also welcome to join us at the session.


  4. What are the common species that you will be covering in the training? Would I still need to attend the training if I can identify them?

    Here are the common damselfly and dragonfly species covered in the training:


    Common Name

    Scientific Name


    Family Coenagrionidae


    Variable Wisp

    Agriocnemis femina


    Ornate Coraltail

    Ceriagrion cerinorubellum


    Common Bluetail

    Ischnura senegalensis


    Blue Sprite

    Pseudagrion microcephalum


    Family Gomphidae


    Common Flangetail

    Ictinogomphus decoratus

    Family Libellulidae


    Trumpet Tail

    Acisoma panorpoides



    Agrionoptera insignis


    Blue Dasher

    Brachydiplax chalybea


    Common Amberwing

    Brachythemis contaminata


    Common Scarlet

    Crocothemis servilia


    Common Parasol

    Neurothemis fluctuans


    Spine-tufted Skimmer

    Orthetrum chrysis


    Blue Skimmer

    Orthetrum glaucum


    Variegated Green Skimmer

    Orthetrum sabina


    Scarlet Skimmer

    Orthetrum testaceum


    Wandering Glider

    Pantala flavescens


    Common Chaser

    Potamarcha congener


    Banded Skimmer

    Pseudothemis jorina


    Common Redbolt

    Rhodothemis rufa


    Yellow-barred Flutterer

    Rhyothemis phyllis


    White-barred Duskhawk

    Tholymis tillarga


    Crimson Dropwing

    Trithemis aurora


    Scarlet Basker

    Urothemis signata insignata

     Even if you can identify these species easily, you should join us if you are unfamiliar with conducting transect surveys. Experienced dragonfly-watchers who are familiar with the techniques and confident of conducting the counts independently with minimal instruction can opt out of the training.


  5. When and where are the training sessions?

    The training sessions will be held on selected weekends in July from 9 am to 12 pm. You only need to attend one session. The dates are:

    • 13 July 2019 (Saturday)
    • 14 July 2019 (Sunday)
    • 20 July 2019 (Saturday)

    All training sessions will be held in the Singapore Botanic Gardens and will include a short outdoor component for participants to try out the techniques taught during the session.


  6. Will the Dragonfly Watch be very time consuming?

    The training will take approximately three hours and the Dragonfly Watch itself will only take no more than three hours, to be conducted on any day between 13 to 20 July 2019 between 9 am to 5 pm. The following windows are recommended:

    • 9 am to 12 pm
    • 2 pm to 5 pm

    If you volunteer to do counts at more than one site, you may be required to spend more than one day within the stipulated week to carry this out.


  7. How will the data I collect help NParks’ park management and conservation efforts?

    The data on the dragonfly species and their distribution collected during the Dragonfly Watch will help establish a baseline from which we can monitor the patterns in dragonfly populations in Singapore. With the counts held annually, we can track changes over time and develop management strategies to sustain or even enhance these populations.


  8. Can my school/company/organisation participate in this event? Can you provide a private training session for us?

    Yes! If you have 20 to 25 participants in your group, we can hold a private training session at a location that is convenient for you. Please contact us at for more information. 


  9. Can children under the age of 12 participate in this event?

    Children under the age of 12 can attend the training sessions and conduct the survey as long as they are accompanied by their parent or guardian. They can be registered under the 'Children under 12 years old' section in the Dragonfly Watch registration form.


Last updated on 19 August 2019

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