S7, Male, ventral
S3, Female, profile
|Class:||Animals (Animalia) - Jointed Legs (Arthropoda) - Insects (Insecta)|
|Family:||Hawker Dragonfly (Epiprocta: Aeshnidae) iNaturalist Observation|
|Species:||Australian Emperor (Anax papuensis)|
|This Photo:||S3, Female, Body|
Thank you John Tann, Karen Weaving & Arthur Yang for confirming the id of this species for us
General Species Information:
Found on Ellura (in the Murray Mallee, SA), the Adelaide Hills and elsewhere
We caught 2 at the same time, a male and a female. They were the same length, ~64mm, but the female had a slightly larger wingspan of ~110mm, vs ~100mm for the male.
These are superficially similar to Tau Emeralds, but the abdominal (tail) patterns are quite different; and these are larger.
Notice the one with a damaged head; once we'd worked out this was a female, we surmised she has already mated as this is the area where the male clamps to.
Separating the genders is not as easy as with others in the odonata order.
John kindly sent us his descriptions which highglighted more differences between the genders than we had found.
The most obvious difference to us was in profile view, the male's thorax kicks up sharply where it joins the abdomen. The female has a gentle join.
In dorsal view, we found very little noticable difference in the wings. We find it easier to see the colour difference of the posterior pattern, and the male's significant waist, which the female is missing. John describes the female's appendages as split oval's; while he describes the male's a 'P' shaped. We were able to show these difference here, but it's not obvious in the field.
We have photographed 7 specimens in Dec, Jan & Mar.