Evening Hawker, Anaciaeschna triangulifera, Nagventer.

118 504 Enseleni NR 1
122 504   Old Airport 24 Nov 12r 1
122 503 Evening Hawker female Anaciaeschna triangulifera Dragonfly Empisini 8 Jan 12r
Short description:

Evening Hawker, Anaciaeschna triangulifera, Nagventer. is very large, slender, dark brown with bright blue eyes, head and abdominal saddle, and greenish and blue abdominal spots.

Family Aeshnidae Leach, 1815

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Key identification features:


  • Face is light blue going to pale grey at sides and towards labrum. Frons above is light blue with a deep black, mushroom-like marking and about ½ as wide as head. Vertex is blue. Two pale dots in front of the eyes.
  • Eyes are bright sky blue above, light blue below.
  • Synthorax is dull brown with some greenish yellow spots (but no shoulder stripes) and two, bright yellow diagonal stripes on side. Auricles are present
  • Wings are lightly smoky to very smoky in old individuals. Veins black. Pterostigmas is fairly short (3.2 mm), reddish brown. Membranule large, broadly bordering anal triangle for more, than ½ its length and is whitish towards the rest of the wing, becoming dark grey closest to abdomen. Hindwing tornus is angled. Hindwing cubital field is always of 2 rows at base.
  • Abdomen very slender and mostly deep chocolate brown and shiny. S1 has a blue bar above, and yellow one below. From above, S2 is brown in anterior half but bright blue behind. S2 below is yellow and brown. S3 has a bright patch in anterior half at side and below. The rest of abdomen has small, light blue spots, becoming larger on S8-10.


  • Much stouter than male.
  • Face is yellowish but with a similar pattern on frons.
  • Eyes are sienna above with bright yellow margin below.
  • Abdomen is reddish brown with pale blue markings
  • Standing and often temporary waters in open landscapes, open areas in forest or shaded by gallery forest.
  • From 0 to 2100 m above sea level, but mostly between 800 and 1700.
  • Dusk flier over reeds and in clearings in warm areas.
Compared with other species:
  • Unmistakable.
  • Bright blue head and eyes,
  • Bright yellow thorax side stripes and long, thin abdomen is diagnostic.
  • No shoulder stripes.
  • Mushroom-shaped, black marking on frons is also distinctive.
  • Similar to Forest Hawker, Z. usambarica, but are medium-sized (hindwing 41-45 mm) and the male’s face is bluish white, the eyes are bright blue (but brown when young), and the small abdomen spots are also bluish.
Anaciaeschna triangulifera Evening Hawker Distribution Map July 2020

Anaciaeschna triangulifera Evening Hawker Africa Distribution Map Aug 2021








South Africa:

  • Rater thinly spread in southern Africa


  • Democratic Republic of the Congo; Ethiopia; Kenya; Malawi; Mozambique; Republic of South Africa; Rwanda; Tanzania; Uganda; Zambia; Zimbabwe;
Further reading:



  • Ris, F. (1921). The Odonata or Dragonflies of South Africa. Annals South African Museum, XVIII, 245-452. [PDF file]
  • Balinsky, B.I. (1961). Observations on the dragonfly fauna of the coastal region of Zululand, with descriptions of three new species (Odonata). Journal Entomological Society Southern Africa, 24, 72-91. [PDF file]
  • Pinhey, E.C.G. (1961). Dragonflies (Odonata) of Central Africa. Occasional Papers Rhodes-Livingstone Museum, 1-97. [PDF file]
  • Pinhey, E.C.G. (1966). Check-list of dragonflies (Odonata) from Malawi, with description of a new Teinobasis Kirby. Arnoldia, 2, 1-24. [PDF file]
  • Schouteden, H. (1934). Annales Musee Congo belge Zoologie 3 Section 2, 3, 1-84. [PDF file]
  • Kirby, W.F. (1900). Report on the Neuroptera Odonata collected by Mr E. E. Austen at Sierra Leone during August and September 1899. Annals Magazine Natural History, 6, 67-79. [PDF file]