Friday, 20 January 2017

Coeliccia hayashii - a wonderful species from Gia Lai province

Summer of 2016 I was able to connect with a probably very rare Coeliccia in Gia Lai Province that had been first found there by Toan in an earlier survey. It occurs in a very specific habitat, under an overhang with seeping water next to a waterfall. Indeed, the few square meters were we have found it are until now the only known location. The female is as yet unknown, but I have seen up to 4 males at a time. It is a strikingly beautiful species, like many others, but it has a peculiar thorax pattern with a large pruinose area on the flanks. If we do not count Indocnemis ambigua also as a Coeliccia species, there are now 4 species known from Vietnam with more or less extensive pruinosity on the thorax or prothorax. These are the two "montana" like species currently being described, and the two species published in the paper in which the present species was coined: "Description of two new species of Coeliccia from Vietnam (Odonata: Platycnemididae)." (Phan & Kompier, 2016). These are the smaller C. mattii and the rare and beautiful C. hayashii.

Male of the beautiful recently described and possibly very rare Coeliccia hayashii. Note the pruinose mark on the flanks and pruinose prothorax.