Red-veined Dropwing, Trithemis arteriosa, Rooinerfie.

Nice maleMale
100 841 Female Ezemvelo Dec 2016 Female
102 537 2016 12 20   Sabiepark maleMale
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.

Family Libellulidae Leach, 1815

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Guides:
Key identification features:

Male:

  • 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 sheen100 858 Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Male Close UP RNR GP RSA Mch 2018r 9
  • Eyes bright red with greyish lower margin.  100 858 Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Male Close UP RNR GP RSA Mch 2018r 9  
  • Thorax red with indistinct black side stripes. Top of the thorax.becomes violet colored with age   100 855 Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Male Close UP RNR GP RSA Mch 2018r 4    
  • Well defined red veins in wings. and light orange splashes at the bases. Splashes larger in hind wings. In the Western Cape they can be almost brown, more broken and less extensive. Pterostigmas, 2.3–2.4 mm, deep reddish brown.100 3208 Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Male Close UP RNR GP RSA Mch 2018r 15
  • Bright red abdomen with very diagnostic black markings on the side. 100 860 Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Male Close UP RNR GP RSA Mch 2018r 14
  • 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.100 3977 Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Female Close up Vaalwater LP RSA Mch 2021r 2 100 847 Trithemis arteriosa Red vained Dropwing Young Male Kromdraai GP RSA Nov 2016r 2

Female:

  • 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       
  • 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
Habitat:
  • 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.
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). 
  • The abdominal markings of T. annulata differ significantly with less black on the side.

Learn More about other Dropwings, (Trithemis) Species

Distribution
 Trithemis arteriosa Red-veined Dropwing Distribution MapDistribution Map
South Africa
Political Map South Africa Political Map
South Africa
Topographical Map South Africa Topographical Map
South Africa
Trithemis arteriosa Red veined Dropwing Distribution Map Africa May 2023Distribution Map
Africa
Political Map AfricaPolitical Map
Africa
Topographical Map AfricaPhysical Map
Africa 

South Africa:

  • Most populous species in South Africa. Found in all provinces but more records from North western cape and FSP will be helpful

Africa:

  • Algeria; Angola; Benin; Botswana; Burkina Faso; Côte d'Ivoire; Cameroon; Cape Verde; Central African Republic; Chad; Congo-Brazzaville; Democratic Republic of the Congo; Djibouti; Egypt; Equatorial Guinea; Eritrea; Ethiopia; Gabon; Gambia; Ghana; Guinee-Bissau; Kenya; Liberia; Libya; Malawi; Mali; Mauritania; Morocco; Mozambique; Namibia; Niger; Nigeria; Republic of Guinea; Republic of South Africa; Rwanda; Senegal; Sierra Leone; Socotra (Yemen); Somalia; South Sudan; Sudan; Swaziland; Tanzania; Togo; Tunisia; Uganda; Zambia; Zimbabwe
Further reading:

Websites of interest

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