Red-veined Dropwing    Trithemis arteriosa    Rooinerfie.

Nice male

100 841 Trithemis arteriosa Female Ezemvelo Dec 2016

102 537 2016 12 20  Trithemis arteriosa Red veined DropwingSabiepark male

Family Libellulidae Leach, 1815

Short description:

Red-veined Dropwing, Trithemis arteriosa, Rooinerfie is small sized, slender, bright red, with bright red wing veins and black on side of tip of abdomen.

More images:

100 840 Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Komatipoort Sept 2016r 1Image Album

100 858 Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Male Haenertsburg LP RSA Dec 2015r 1Male

Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Young Male Kromdraai GP RSA Nov 2016Young Male

100 972 Trithemos arteriosa Red vein Dropwing Male Close up Ndumu Mch 2017r 1Young Male

100 967 Trithemis arteriosa Redveined Dropwing Female Close UP Badplaas Close up MP RSA NOV 2016r 1Female

 

 

 

 

 

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Guides:
Key identification features:

Males:

  • Face deep red. Labium deep yellow with central dark brown stripe. Labrum dark red with notched black patch on lower margin. Anteclypeus, postclypeus and front of frons dark red. Top of frons and top of head dimpled deep red with metallic purple sheen
  • Eyes bright red with greyish lower margin. Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Brits NWP RSA Dec 2015
  • Thorax red with indistinct black side stripes. Top of the thorax.becomes violet colored with age Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Brits NWP RSA Dec 2015    Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Brits NWP RSA Dec 2015  
  • Well defined red veins in wings. and light orange splashes at the bases. Splashes larger in hindwings. In the Western Cape they can be almost brown, more broken and less extensive. Pterostigmas, 2.3–2.4 mm, deep reddish brown.
  • Bright red abdomen with very diagnostic black markings on the side. 100 856 Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Brits NWP RSA Dec 2015r 4
  • Abdomen red and slender . In side view, segments 6 - 8 has  black wedges that become increasingly larger up to a black s 9 - 10. 100 853 Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Young Male Kromdraai GP RSA Nov 2016r 11 Yellow bands on the hind margin of s 8-10 100 853 Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Young Male Kromdraai GP RSA Nov 2016r 11
  • Young Male and females are similar in colour.

Females:

  • Colour varies from yellowish to straw coloured yellow, darkish brown, brown with age with black and yellowish stripes .Trithemis arteriosa Redveined Dropwing Female Close UP Badplaas Close up MP RSA NOV 2016  Trithemis arteriosa Redveined Dropwing Female Close UP Badplaas Close up MP RSA NOV 2016    Trithemis arteriosa Redveined Dropwing Female Close UP Badplaas Close up MP RSA NOV 20165
  • Female and immature males have a yellowish-russet abdomen with a pale streak between the wings. Orange wing splashes, distinct cream stripe that runs between wing bases present, Western Cape females may have wings that have orange splashes around nodus.
  • Abdominal markings similar to that of the male.  Trithemis arteriosa Redveined Dropwing Female Close UP Badplaas Close up MP RSA NOV 2016
Compared with other species:
  • Sometime a violet colored sheen is visible on top of the thorax. This must not be confused with the violet colour thorax of T. annulata (Violet Dropwing). Trithemis annulata Violet Dropwing Male Close UP RNR GP RSA Mch 2018
  • The abdominal markings of T. annulata differ significantly with less black on the side.Trithemis annulata Violet Dropwing Male Close UP RNR GP RSA Mch 2018
Distribution and habitat:

Trithemis arteriosa Red veined Dropwing Distribution Map May 2020Probably the most populated species in the region of Southern Africa. 
Frequents pools, dams, marshes and still and sluggish reaches of rivers streams and large lakes and flowing channels in
marshes, mostly in open landscapes, but also open areas in forest.
From 0 to 2400 m above sea level, but mostly below 1700.

Behaviour:
  • Perches conspicuously on emergent twigs or reeds at water's edge, but on hot days will move into the shade of trees.
  • Females sometimes found well away from the water.
Further reading:

Websites of interest
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (Least Threatened)
Odonata Atlas of Africa VMU Number 668670
A Visual Guide to the Damselflies and Dragonflies of South Africa 

 
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