103 023 Allocnemis leucosticta Goldtail 117 039 Allocnemis leucosticta Goldtail 101 032 Allocnemis leucosticta Goldtail Young Pair Tzaneen LP December 2015 1

Goldtail.   Goudstertjie.   Flag of South Africa.svg

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101 030 Allocnemis leucosticta Goldtail Male Dap Naudee Dam Tzaneen LP December 2015 1
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Short description:

Goldtail, Allocnemis leucostuca, Genus Allocnemis, Family Platycnemididae, is slender, mostly black, with black and pale blue thorax, smoky wings, white pterostigmas and abdomen with golden tip.

Key identification features:


  • White pterostigmas and golden tip at the end of the abdomen is diagnostic.
  • Wings are smoky.
  • Thorax black with light pale blue.


  • Similar but less brightly coloured.
  • Abdomen tip blueish with sometime yellow colouring.
Compared with other species:
  • Unmistakable. No other spesies to compare with.
Distribution and habitat:
  • Endemic to South Africa.
  • Clear, shallow, forest streams. Varies from well forested areas to occasional bushes and trees.
  • Montane forests along the coastal highlands from Western Cape - to Limpopo Provinces.
  • Flits in sunny spots among branches overhanging streams, landing and perching in a conspicuous position.
  • The white pterostigmas are clearly visible in flight.
  • Fluttering flight pattern.
  • Sometime in large numbers.
Further reading:
A Guide to Dragonflies and Damselflies of South Africa   p. 54
Dragonflies and Damselflies of South Africa   p. 66
Dragonfly Biotic Index   p. 58
Websites of interist
Warwick Tarboton
A Visual Guide to the Damselflies and Dragonflies of South Africa
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species Least Concern.

Odonata Atlas of Africa VMU Number 661480
African Dragonflies & Damselflies Online
Other Information:
Size Comparison Diagram Dragonflies, Damselflies
Morphology of a
Dragonfly or Damselfly
Map of South Africa




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