100 1616 Pseudagrion assegaii Assegai Sprite Male Hertzogberg MP RSA Nov 2017r 2 100 1613 Pseudagrion assegaii Assegai Sprite Male Vaalwater LP RSA Sept 2017f 3 100 1617 Pseudagrion assegaii Assegai Sprite Male Hertzogberg MP RSA Nov 2017r 3

Assegai Sprite   Assegaaigesie

Also called Spearhead Sprite, Spear Sprite

Links to images and articles:
  • Images of  Assegai Sprite
  • Close-up for identification assistance.
    Male. 
  • Click on all links and images to open or enlarge
Short description:

Pseudagrion assegaii, Assegai Sprite, Genus Pseudagrion (B Group), Family Coenagrionidae,  is small, all bright blue and black with a spear shaped mark abdomen.

Key identification features:

Male

  • \Face is light sky blue and black with the labrum light blue with small central black spot. Anteclypeus brownish pale blue, postclypeus black. Frons is blue in front with a black half-moon marking above, which connects with black of top of head. Head black with isolated blue postocular spots from above.
  • Eyes are pale blue, pinkish below. Neck is black above with a blue spot on each side, blue below.
  • Thorax is black above bordered by brownish blue stripes, sharply-defined narrow black stripe present on each side.
  • Wings are clear. Pterostigmas pale brown, almost buff.
  • Abdoment Segment 1 is sky blue with black basal spot. S 2 is blue with distinct spearhead-shape black marking. The rest of abdomen is light blue with black line running along top up to hind margin of s 7. Segments 8 to 10 are bright sky blue.S 10 has black mark on top in the foem of an "X"

Female

  • Slightly more robust than male, similar patterning but blue is replaced by light brown pterostigmas pale
Compared with other species:
  • Segment 2 is shaped like a spear on P assegaii and like a round bowl flower pot with long stem on Africallagme glaucum, Swamp bluet.
  • Postacular spots on P assegaii is smal, roung and not linked to each other
  • On A. glaucum the postocular spots at narow and linked.
  • Marking on S 7 in P. assegaii in open and less of a keyhole than A. glaucum only about 2/3 around the end of the segment
Distribution and habitat:

The Assegai Sprite was only known  from the Limpopo Province but was recently found in western Mpumalanga (Witbank and Bronkhorstspruit). It also occurs in Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Behaviour:
  • Prefferd habitat is sluggish streams and pools with an abundance of lilies reeds and grasses in dry savanna.
  • Usually seen sitting on lily pads, but will flit close to the water surface when disturbed.
  • May be found in the grassy areas next to the waters edge
Further reading and other information:
Books:
The Dragonflies and Damselflies of Eastern Africa ... p.182
A Guide to Dragonflies and Damselflies of South Africa p. 158
Dragonfly Biotic Index     p. 150

Websites:
Warwick Tarboton
Waterberg Biopquest
A Visual Guide to the Damselflies and Dragonflies of South Africa
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species  Least Concern
African Dragonflies & Damselflies Online

Odonata Atlas of Africa Odonata Atlas of Africa Number
663680.

Other Information:
Size Comparison Diagram
Dragonflies, Damselflies
Morphology of a
Dragonfly,  Damselfly
Map of South Africa
X

Right Click

Copyrighted material - contact us if you want to buy a photo