Spesbona (Ceres Streamjack)
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Male. Teneral male. Female. Teneral female
Spesbona angusta, Spesbona (Ceres Streamjack), Family Platycnemididae, Genus Spesbona is slender, dark blue and black, very much like a Sprite when first seen, but with strikingly long curved appendages.
Key identification features:
The face is dull black with some brown. The labrum is pale blue with a central black spot. Anteclypeus grey. Postclypeus
grey with two lateral streaks. Head above is black. Eyes dull pale blue, with mauve suffusion. The prothorax is pale blue, with central, wide, black stripe with the synthorax strongly stripes pale blue and black. S2-7 has very bold, incomplete black rings against a pale blue background. S7 has a dorsal, longitudinal black stripe. S8-10 has fine, black rings against pale blue. S8-9 with single, black, point spots on either side. Superior appendages black
Males vary in colour according to temperature. When cold it is matt black to parts of the head, thorax and abdomen and with ambient temperature increase it becomes increasingly brighter. Pterostigmas are light buff to light brown in colour and almost squire.
Female are similar in patterning to the males, but brown replaces black, and pale blue not so vivid, except lower half of synthorax. Head, eyes, prothorax, synthorax and S9-10 greenish brown above. The legs mostly reddish brown. With temperature rise, some parts of the head and thorax become lighter.
Compared with other species:
Looks similar to pseudagrion species but the long curved blackish inferior appendages is diagnostic. Metacnemis valida, Blue Riverjack is a ECP species but is light blue with black. Mesocnemis singularis, Savanna Riverjack, is a northern southern Africa species that prefers larger, strong flowing rivers perching on rocks and overhanging plants and stems close to the current
Distribution and habitat:
Vary rare endemic and localised. Found from Ceres to the lower reaches of the Du Toit’s river near Franschhoek
FrequentsPools in river braids, with bushy fynbos margins and floating leaves of Aponogeton water plants
Males fly across and close to the water surface, regularly landing on perch lengthwise, usually horizontally along twigs or reed stems. Perch close to the water. Females often among males over water but sometimes in bushes or among tall grass some metres from the water.
Link to Further reading and information
|A Guide to Dragonflies and Damselflies of South Africa
Dragonflies and Damselflies of South Africa
Dragonfly Biotic Index
Odonata Atlas of Africa VMU Number 662140
Distribution Map (Including historic and excluding data)
Map of South Africa