Rhyothemis variegata (Variegated Flutterer)

Being unused to Anisoptera with colourful wings in Europe, this species and its congeners may come as a bit of a shock – a very striking shock. I think R. variegata shows extensively marked wings in black and yellow, particularly the females which have more extensively coloured wings than the males. I think it’s an unmistakeable species.

We came across a swarm of these guys at Mihintale Temple in Sri Lanka, which is where Carol snagged the group shot below. I believe that the species is prone to swarming as I’ve seen other, similar records. I did see one settled but for too brief a time to allow my approach. In flight seemed to be the only way to get them.

Id Notes

  • metallic green thorax
  • black abdomen
  • extensive, variable black and yellow wing markings
  • ♂ – dark clouding on wing tip [personal observation]