Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Periaeschna magdalena - until proven otherwise

When checking a small stream just west of Nam Bung in Yen Bai Province on April 30, Kameliya spotted an Aeschnid hanging in a bush by the stream. I was able to take a few record shots, but failed miserably in catching it, as it was hanging smack in the middle of a thorn bush. There was a lot of cursing going on, but today I studied the venation of the wings and was able to pin down the genus as Periaeschna. Only one species is known from Vietnam, but 5 occur in China, so it is quite likely that other species will also occur in Vietnam, besides the known P. magdalena. The pattern of the abdomen, the all dark legs, the brownish frons, the small brown basal spots to all wings however all fit P. magdalena nicely. Asahina (1981) produced descriptions of the species that proved helpful and newly described species from Southern China (by Wilson and by Xu) do not fit. But I am open to suggestions.

Male Periaeschna magdalena with its very dense wing venation typical of the genus (median space with many crossveins)

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