Southern Migrant Hawker (Aeshna affinis)
Species
Southern Migrant Hawker (Aeshna affinis). Male. Taken in Bulgaria on June 22nd 2014. Approx 2.5x lifesize.
Male. Taken in Bulgaria on June 22nd 2014.
(1/200th sec at f13. Approx 1.5x lifesize. Click image for larger version. © David Hastings)

Description

Wing span: 74 - 84mm; Body length: 57 - 66mm

Similar to, and often confused with, the Migrant Hawker. The male's bright blue eyes and abdomen, and largely green thorax sides are distinctive. The female is brownish, but occasionally develops male colours.

It is found quite widely in Europe, but scarce in Iberia and north Africa. It may be invasive in good summers, and it occasionally turns up in southern England.

It prefers standing waterbodies which dry up over the course of the summer, often overgrown with emergent vegetation.

Adults are on the wing from May to August, earlier than the Migrant Hawker.

Males patrol low, at about chest height, frequently perching. It is the only aeashnid that lays its eggs while in tandem.

Sightings

15-Nov-2018 : Extremadura, Spain (2+)
13-Nov-2018 : Extremadura, Spain (3+)
12-Nov-2018 : Extremadura, Spain (1+)
11-Mar-2018 : Fuerteventura, Canary Islands (1)
22-Jun-2014 : Roadside, Bulgaria