Damselflies: Austrolestes io

Damselflies Austroagrion cyane Austroagrion watsoni Austroargiolestes calcaris Austrocnemis splendida Austrolestes annulosus Austrolestes aridus Austrolestes cingulatus Austrolestes io Austrolestes leda Austrolestes psyche Coenagrion lyelli Hemiphlebia mirabilis Ischnura aurora Ischnura heterosticta Pseudagrion microcephalum Xanthagrion erythroneurum Dragonflies Anax papuensis Archaeosynthemis orientalis Austroaeschna ingrid Austroaeschna multipunctata Austroaeschna unicornis Austrogomphus guerini Austropetalia tonyana Austrothemis nigrescens Crocothemis nigrifrons Dendroaeschna conspersa Diplacodes bipunctata Diplacodes haematodes Diplacodes melanopsis Diplacodes trivialis Eusynthemis virgula Hemicordulia australiae Hemicordulia tau Notoaeschna sagittata Orthetrum caledonicum Parasynthemis regina Petalura gigantea Procordulia jacksoniensis Synthemis eustalacta Telephlebia brevicauda
distribution map
Source: ALA

♂ Waterhouse, TAS

♂ Waterhouse, TAS

Waterhouse, TAS
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Common Nameiota ringtail
FamilyLestidae
Genus/SpeciesAustrolestes io (Selys, 1862)
Abundance &
Distribution
These are most common around south-west Western Astralia and Tasmania although they also occur in southern Victoria (and nearby) where they are uncommon.
HabitatInhabits riverine pools, lakes, ponds (including temporary ponds) and swamps. I find them most at swamps or small lakes with abundant emergent aquatic vegetation.
Description &
Identification
These are small–medium sized damselflies that are predominantly black but with significant pale markings that are blue when mature.
Similar SpeciesVery similar to Austrolestes leda but the pale dorsal mark on segment 2 for male A. io is never longer than a third of the segment's length where it is longer for A. leda. There is also more pale on the pronotum (neck) for A. io (refer to the 2009 Theischinger &s; Endersby Identification Guide). These features are usally difficult to detect in the wild or from a photo (segment 2 is often obscured by the wings). No other Austrolestes species (ringtails) have the humeral stripe with another small mark underneath it like this.
Behaviour &
Observations
Males mostly perch on vegetation off the ground around water or in among emergent aquatic vegetation, possibly close to the water surface.

Page Updated: 1-Apr-2016
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