Acacia Sprite Pseudagrion acaciae Akasiagesie.
- Medium sized with a rusty face and thorax with green postocular spots and diagnostic markings on segment 8-10 of the abdomen.
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Key identification features:
- Head is rusty red in front, distinctly light green behind from above. Greenish yellow very large postocular spots. Back of head as a distinctly light green with black line.
- Eyes are orange red in front, greenish blue behind, dark brown cap present on the back half. Neck is bluish green with black half ring. The ring has a greenish yellow V-shape mark with dots either side The V-shape is similar to the pattern on S 2.
- Thorax dorsal carina is black. Thorax is rusty orange-red above, antehumeral stripes are black. Light greenish blue at sides and below.
- Wings are clear. Light blue dot shaped markings between the wings.
- Pterostigmas are reddish brown.
- Abdomen segment 1 has black square pattern with two short light green lengthwise stripes. The black square is surrounded by light green. S 1 is light blue ring with a black elliptical pattern with two blue spots inside the black mark. S 2 has distinct green stripe ending in a V-pattern at the thorax side. 2 to 7 lime green with black dorsal lines and black rings. S 8 and 9 have bright blue hat like shaped marking (May be rings on young males).
- Lower claspers are shorter than upper claspers with lower clasper distinctly turned upwards.
- Dull brown and black.
- Eyes are greenish brown on top with two lines around eye in the top part. Light brown postocular spots ringed by black line in front and becoming dotted behind.
- Neck and prothorax have very distinct flat V-shaped lines. Sides of thorax are light greenish blue becoming light brown with age.Dorsal carina is black edged by thin yellow band. Middorsal thorax stripes are tawny brown. Antihumeral stripes are black.
- Abdominal segments split are black with black triangular shaped marks at end of segment, becoming larger toward s 10. Doral black line becomes broader towards s 10.
Compared with other species:
- Distinguished by the large green (female pale brown) postocular spots are very distinctive.
- Blue hat-like oval shaped markings on s 8-9.
- Claspers are very distinctive.
- P massaicum is similar but with different postocular spots and abdominal markings.
Distribution and habitat:
Limpopo valley Mpumalanga and northern KZN.
Prefers rivers in open landscapes, but sometimes shaded by gallery forest.
It can be found in shady areas away from the water, sometimes on the high river bank.
Male and female often at same location. Feeds on lice and other insect by flitting among the grass and small brush. Picking food of the leaves or catching prey in flight.
Websites of interest
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species
Odonata Atlas of Africa VMU Number 662720
African Dragonflies and Damselflies Online
A Visual Guide to the Damselflies and Dragonflies of South Africa