Tuesday, 29 September 2015

The real female Planaeschna tomokunii

On September 24 I went to Tam Dao to look for Planaeschna tamdaoensis and P. tomokunii. The first I wanted to catch to see if it is truly different from P. gressitti, and the other to verify what I had concluded was P. tomokunii from Pia Oac and Yen Bai. The day started dismally. It was misty and the road to Tam Dao 2 was blocked. So I went to the stairway to the antenna above Tam Dao. This is the location where Cuong had caught the species before and I was hoping that I might see it at a small stream in the forest there. Previously I had not been lucky, but this time, after some staking out, I noticed a female searching for a place to oviposit. I could not reach her, but several other specimens made an appearance and eventually I could net one. This is a remarkably robust species at 71mm body length. And even if I could not find a male, this female as enough to show that the drawings and description of Cuong are very accurate. It also made clear that this species is certainly not identical to what occurs at Pia Oac and at Yen Bai. It is of course still possible that the males are variants of the same species, but I for sure had no similar females yet. Whatever the females from Yen Bai and Pia Oac (at least two different species) are, they are not P. tomokunii. I hope that soon I will have time to try for the male again.

Planaeschna tomokunii, remarkably robust and with relatively dark abdomen.

Its face is not as bland pale brown as in most. The labrum is distinctly pale and there are clear  brown flecks on the postclypeus.
The pattern on S2 is very interesting. The dorsal line is indeed interrupted, and the distal mark is quite narrow

No comments:

Post a Comment