Brown Duskhawker, Gynacantha (A) villosa, Bruinskemerventer
Brown Duskhawker, Gynacantha (A) villosa, Bruinskemerventer is very large sized, mottled dull brown with smoky wings, especially at the base.
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Key identification features:
- Face olive green. Nose dark brownish olive green with dark brown T-shaped marking above.
- Eyes olive green above, pale green below, with a yellow hind margin.
- Thorax relatively unmarked, light greenish brown, distinctly hairy. Rim of metastigma black, contrasting with colour of thorax
- Wings wings may be tinted (smoky), but without distinct subcostal rays, becoming dark with age. About 22 - 28 antenodal crossveins in forewing. 2 cell-rows between R2 and R3 proximal to Pt, save occasional cell. Anal triangle with 4 cells (3 - 6). Pterostigmas reddish dark brown, 4.5 mm long.
- Abdomen long, slender, reddish dark brown with emerald saddle on segment 3. S3 waisted near base. Auricles emerald green with black tips and 6 teeth. Ventral carinae S5-6 and usually S4 with denticles (Tooth-like spines), rather than all being bare. Cerci with distinct ventral lump near base (lateral view), widened and sharply cut-off at end, inner border bisinuous, concave roughly 2/3 from base
- Female similar to male
- Abdomen much thicker and with a less to almost no waist at s 3
- Wings become very smoky with age.
- Standing and mostly temporary waters shaded by (gallery) forest.
- Probably often with coarse detritus and a soft (like muddy) bottom.
- From 0 to 2200 m above sea level, but mostly below 1700.
- Alert as it perches conspicuously on a stick on reed at a pool or river margin, often darting out to defend its territory.
- Frequently seen on hot days with its abdomen in the upright obelisk position and its wings forward
Compared with other species:
- Very large in size.Larger than Little Duskhawker, G. manderica .
- Little Duskhawker, G. manderica has 13 - 19 Ax veins in forewing.
- Eastern Duskhakwer has greenish colouring. rather than the brownish of the Brown Duskhawker.
- Eastern Duskhawker does not have black rim around the metastigma
- G villosa has 2, rather than 3 cell-rows between R2 and R3 proximal to Pt, save occasional cell
- Female G. villosa the only Dukhawker, Gynacantha, with a broad abdomen
- Extremely rare (but due to behaviour new records may be found)
- Found in KZN with a recent record in Mpumalanga
- Botswana; Democratic Republic of the Congo; Ethiopia; Kenya; Malawi; Mozambique; Namibia; Nigeria; Republic of South Africa; Rwanda; Tanzania; Uganda; Zambia; Zimbabwe
Websites of interest
- The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (Least Concern)
- Odonata Atlas of Africa VMU Number 664270
- A Visual Guide to the Damselflies and Dragonflies of South Africa