100 1426 Crenigomphus hartmanni Clubbed Talontail Young Male Songimvelo Nature Reserve MP RSA Feb 2019r 15 100 1426 Crenigomphus hartmanni Clubbed Talontail Male Ezemvelo GP RSA Jan 2016r 1 107 515 Crenigomphus hartmanni Clubbed Talontail Female Douglas NCP RSA Jan 2018r 1

Clubbed Talontail.    Knoppiekloustert.

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Short description:

Clubbed Talontail, Crenigomphus hartmanni, Genus Crenigomphus, Family Gomphidae, is fairly large, dull yellowish green and brown striped, with very distinct club of two small foliations on each side.

Key identification features:


  • Frons has a distinct black stripe. Labrum and clypeus is divided by a black line with a downwards curve in the center.
  • Appendages are large, light brown and curve downwards. S 8-10 swollen and with small yellow and black edged foliations, This give this species a large clubbed abdomen with talon-like powerful appendages. Tips of appendages are black.
  • Long black pterostigmas.


  • Simmilar to male but with a thicker and more yellow abdomen and club
    Wing costal vein bright yellow
 Compared with other species:
  • Looks similar to the Horned Talontail, C. cornutus, but C. hartmanni has lighter abdomen and much larger foliations and club.
  • May be misidentified when using thorax pattern and abdomen markings with Ceratogomphus pictus (Common Thorntail) and Onychogomphus supinus (Lined Claspertail)
Distribution and habitat:
  • Common and widespread across the warm eastern and northern side of South Africa.
  • This species is found around lakes, pools, swift open savanna streams and rivers, with tall grass and thorn bush nearby. It is easy to find but very seasonal.
  • Hunts from rock in or near rivers. Also perches conspicuously on tops of tall grass and small bushes. Sometimes found away from the water.
Further reading:
Clubbed Talontail Crenigomphus hartmanni

A Guide to Dragonflies and Damselflies of South Africa ... p 132
Dragonflies and Damselflies of South Africa ... p 130
Dragonfly Biotic Index ... p 41

The Dragonflies and Damselflies of Eastern Africa ... p. 108
Websites of interest:
A Visual Guide to the Damselflies and Dragonflies of South Africa

Odonata Atlas of Africa VMU Number 664640
African Dragonflies and Damselflies Online
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species
Other Information:
Size Comparison Diagram: Dragonflies and Damselflies
Morphology of a Dragonfly and Damselfly
Map of South Africa


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