Xiphiagrion cyanomelas (Selys, 1876)黑背細蟌


Found in Asia: Indonesia, Philippines
  • Phylum: Arthropoda Latreille, 1829 - arthropods
    • Class: Insecta Linnaeus, 1758 - insects
      • Order: Odonata - dragonflies and damselflies
        • Suborder: Zygoptera Selys, 1854 - damselflies
          • Family: Coenagrionidae
            • Genus: Xiphiagrion
              • Species: cyanomelas (Selys, 1876)
                • Scientific Name: Xiphiagrion cyanomelas (Selys, 1876)

Other blue damselflies of Sabah :

Xiphiagrion cyanomelas is a very small, dainty species distinguished by the presence of two short spots at the front of the synthorax viewed from above. Also, the distinctive marking on the abdomen of the male separates it from other very small species.

The female has exceptionally dark dorsal coloration. It occurs from lowlands up to 1500 m around ponds, lakes and slow streams in open country and at forest edges.

A small black-and-blue coenagrionid damselfly

Picture 2 : A close up view of the mouth piece of above female Xiphiagrion cyanomelas.

See the Labium with two sharp hock (like our lower jaw with two sharp teeth)

I found this female Xiphiagrion cyanomelas drowning on the drain on 22 June 2007. Still alive. I photograph it enclosed in a clear PVC beg over a graph paper.

From the graph scale, this female’s hind wing is 16mm
Abdomen = 20mm
Whole body length = 26mm
Head width = 3mm

A loving pair of Xiphiagrion cyanomelas (Selys, 1876). The female so concentrated in continuing laying eggs (oviposit) and does not aware the husband already fell pray to a spider.

The color of the spider match the color and patent of the water surface making the couple difficult to see a dangerous enemy near by. At that time the female might have fully immerged into water to oviposit leaving only the male above the water. An adult Xiphiagrion cyanomelas is only 26 mm in length. Such high above water is an easy height for this long lagged spider to jump onto.
The spider escaped when I rescue this loving couple of Xiphiagrion cyanomelas (Selys, 1876). from the water.

The female is alive and restlessly seem that she still want to continue her obligatory in completing her ovipositing (laying eggs). Though dead, the male anal appendage hold on tight onto the female’s pro-thorax.

The male is lifeless. The spider had injected enough poison into his left neck. What a terrible moment to dye right in front your love one in the middle of love. In dead he still hold tight to her………”we live together so shall we dye together.”
A little pull (by me) helped to ‘unchain’ this female Xiphiagrion cyanomelas from the ‘deadly love lock’ from the male.

The color and size of both male and female Xiphiagrion cyanomelas are similar. When viewed from top their eyes and thorax are pure black. This is unique patent make them easily distinguish from other similar species.

She is robust and could not remain still on the back of my hand. But she could not fly until I untangled her left pair of stuck wings.
Alive and back to nature, this female Xiphiagrion cyanomelas narrow escaped from dead only few minutes ago.

Her male partner was unfortunately dead from pray of a spider in the mid of her ovipositing. In this unwilling dead, her male partner appendage remain tightly hold on her prothorex.

INDEX : Damselfly     March 02, 2016 09:29:54 PM