Elattoneura glauca. Common Threadtail. MaleElattoneura glauca. Common Threadtail. FemaleElattoneura glauca Common Threadtail Mating Pair Nwanedi LP RSA Dec 2018

Common Threadtail.     Dewone Draadstertjie.

Family Platycnemididae Yakobson & Bianchi, 1905

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Elattoneura glauca Common Threadtail Male Lajuma Nature Reserve LP RSA Dec 2018ImagesElattoneura glauca Common Threadtail KloofzightMaleElattoneura glauca Common Threadtail Female EzemveloFemale




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Short description:

Small sized, slender, and strongly striped in bluish grey and black.

Key identification features:

Male:

  • Face is dark grey with a strong greyish white pruinescence. The labrum is blackish. Head is greyish black from above. Neck is a pruinescent greyish blue.
  • Eyes are blackish brown above, turning turquoise midway, green below; dark ring present midway. 
  • Thorax is distinctly pruinescent greyish blue from above with a distinctive black stripe on the shoulder. Area between the wing bases with small light brown blotches.Elattoneura glauca Common Threadtail Kloofzight
  • Wings are clear. Pterostigmas dark are brown with fine light brown borders.
  • Abdomen dark bluish black with fine indistinct buff rings. Segments 1 and 2 pruinescent above, segments 8 to 10 heavily pruinescent greyish white.
  • Young males similar to females bite brown with white markings on s 7-10

Female:

  • Slightly larger and more robust than male,
  • Thorax patterning  brown and dark brown with creamy brown stripes Dark version very dark almost blackish brown with creamy white strips
  • Abdomen with distinct white, browning slightly with age,  markings on s 7-10.
Compared with other species:
  • Distinguished from Elattoneura frenulata Elattoneura frenulata Sooty Threadtail Male Kogelberg Western Cape 18 11 2015 by being bluish grey and not black and is rare in southwestern WCP.
  • It is smaller and much more slender than any species and the dorsal, wide, greyish blue thoracic stripes give it a 'greybacked' appearance.
  • Striped Pseudagrion species have wider black stripes than blue when viewed from above.
  • Appendages distinctive.
Distribution and habitat:

Distribution MapAbundant and widespread across much of the country,
There are few records from the Karoo and it is localised and rare on the coast and in the Lowveld. 
It occurs up to 1 700 m in elevation. 
Habitat is tall grasses beside sluggish reaches of rivers and occasionally pools, marshes and dams.

Behaviour:
  • Reluctant to fly and is most often seen perching on grass stems. Its flight is slow and hovering, covering just a few centimeters.
Further reading:
Websites
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species

Odonata Atlas of Africa VMU Number 661810
Warwick Tarboton
A Visual Guide to the Damselflies and Dragonflies of South Africa

 

Description information by Michael J Samways

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