100 577 Catshead Sprite Male Rust de Winters Dec 2016r 4100 585 Catshead Imm Male Rust de Winter June 2016 r 3 of 4Pseudagrion coeleste, Catshead Sprite  Mating Pair

Catshead Sprite.    Broodruggesie.

Family Coenagrionidae Kirby, 1890
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103 020 Pseudagrion coeleste coelesteCatshead SpriteImages




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Short Description:

Small bright blue damsel with cat’s head marking on S2 of the abdomen.

Key identification features:

Male:

  • Eyes greenish  with a sky-blue body with black markings. 
  • Face is greenish blue.  Back of head is black with large pale bluish green postocular spots. 
  • Black band on top of the head reach the bases of the antenna. 
  • Upper thorax is bluish green with black humeral stripe. Side of the thorax is light blue with black stripe. Wings are clear with light brown to dark mauvish brown pterostigmas. 
  • Abdomen greenish blue below with black dorsal stripe. S1 is blue with black basal spot. The marking on S2 is shaped like a cat's head. This may vary in the northern region (catshead shape with long rabbit like ears) or in Southern form (short cat ears). S3-7 has shiny rings. S8-9 are completely blue. S10 is blue with black dorsal X and black appendages.

Female:

  • Greenish blue with large green postocular spots. 
  • Upper thorax is brown with black humeral stripe.
Compared with other species:

Distinct postocular spots. 

  • Thoracic blue stripe of Pseudagrion coeleste is much wider than that of Pseudagrion assegaii (Asssegaai Sprite)
  • Abdominal marking on S2 is cat's head shaped in P. Coeleste, but spear-shaped in  Pseudagrion assegaii.  Female are more blueish than females of other sprite species.
Distribution and habitat:

http://vmus.adu.org.za/vm_map_afr.php?&database=odonata&grid=2&outline=1&key=0&map=4&spp=663710Eastern Lowveld of South Africa and North eastern KZN.
Frequents and rest the fringes of swamps, marshes, pools, and dammed reaches of rivers with an abundance
of grass, floating lily pads, often aquatic vegetation,  reeds and sedges. 
From 0 to 1600 m above sea level.

 Behaviour:

  • Rests and flits among emergent, rank vegetation. Often rests on lily pads.
Further reading:

Websites of interest
Odonata Atlas of Africa - VMU Number 663710
African Dragonflies and Damselflies Online
The IUCN red list of Threatened Species (Least Concern)
A Visual Guide to the Damselflies and Dragonflies of South Africa

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