Stream Hawker, Pinheyschna subpupillata, Spruitjieventer.  

108 531  Male Kogelberg WC Nov 2015
107 509 Pinhheyschna subpupillata Stream Hawker Female Napier WCP RSA Oct 2016r 10
108 550 Pinheyschna subpupillata Stream Hawker Male Kogelberg Western Cape 19 10 2016

Short description

Stream Hawker, Pinheyschna subpupillata, Spruitjieventer is large sized, green and brown striped, with a spotted abdomen.

Family Aeshnidae Leach, 1815

Also called Southern Stream Hawker.

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Key identification features:


  • Face deep yellow to greenish yellow.
  • Eyes are bright green that tends to be olive above.
  • Frons is distinctive above with central black spot surrounded by yellow ring, again surrounded by a black ring. The stem of black mark on frons is round and surrounded by pale area shaped like bull’s-eye, on greenish/yellow face.
  • Thorax dull dark brown, sides with two large diagonal greenish yellow lines.
  • Wings slightly smoky with brown veins and some yellow crossveins. Pterostigmas of medium length (3.5 mm), reddish brown. Membranule (inside area of hindwing) mostly white with grey patch on outer hind quarter
  • Abdomen has regular pattern of green and brown patches. No blue saddle as in other Hawker Sp.. Underside of segment 2 with pair of backward-pointing hornlike lobes, can even be seen in flight.


  • Female similar, also with pattern on nose, stouter, more extensively brown.
  • Favours fast flowing streams in hilly terrain, in open landscapes, open areas in forest or shaded by gallery forest. Streams usually with rocks, often dead trunks or branches, and probably overhanging branches.
  • From 0 to 1900 m above sea level.
  • Hawking rapidly up and down over flowing water, resting on bushes along the edge. It may fly away from the water and is sometimes seen in gardens, especially in the Western Cape.
Compared with other species:
  • Similar to Zosteraeschna minuscula (Friendly Hawker) which has an anchor, not a bulls-eye mark on the forehead.
  • Does not have any blue as in other Zosteraeschnsa sp.
  • Similar to Pinheyschna rileyi, Northern Stream  Hawker (Zimbabwe) (also called the  Bullseye Hawker) Differs by ranging from Zimbabwe to South Africa.  Relatively smaller size, Hw 39-41 mm Space between lateral stripes with pale marking near Fw base Costa pale yellow rather than brown, and many cross-veins near base yellow, including those in triangles, contrasting with dark surrounding veins (rather than all venation being uniformly dark).  [Adapted from Dijkstra & Clausnitzer 2014]
Pinheyschna subpupillata Stream Hawker Distribution Map July 2020










South Africa:

  • From the Western Cape along the costal belt to the north eastern interior, Mpumalanga 


  • It occurs in South Africa, Zimbabwe and Mozambique.
Further reading for Stream Hawker, Pinheyschna subpupillata, Spruitjieventer.:



  • Ris, F. (1921). The Odonata or Dragonflies of South Africa. Annals South African Museum, XVIII, 245-452. [PDF file]