oa Journal of the Entomological Society of Southern Africa - Odonata collected in and near seasonal pools in Wankie National Park, Rhodesia, with notes on the physico-chemical environments in which nymphs were found

Volume 37, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0013-8789



Collections of adult and nymphal Odonata were taken from semi-arid aeolian sand regions of Wankie National Park in which the only aquatic environments range from ephemeral rainpools to larger seasonal lakes. Both imaginal and nymphal collections include large numbers of a few species. Hemianax ephippiger (Burm.), Pantala flavescens (Fabr.) and Palpopleura sp. comprise 90% of identifiable nymphs. Lestes pallidus Rambur f. ochraceous Selys., Ceriagrion suave Ris., Hemianax ephippiger (Burm.), Brachythemis leucosticta (Burm.) and Philonomon luminans (Karsch.) predominate among imaginal forms. The range of physico-chemical conditions under which nymphs were found is recorded and the probable breeding success of certain species in these pools is discussed. Comparison with previous records of Odonata from temporary rainpools in Africa suggests that species are highly adapted to such habitats by the dispersal mechanisms of the imago which ensure efficient colonisation of such habitats, by the rapid nymphal growth rates which enable the life history to be completed before the pools dry up, and by the nymphal tolerance of rapid fluctuations and wide ranges in environmental conditions.

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