|Crocothemis is a genus of dragonflies
in the Libellulidae family, subfamily Sympetrinae (Darters). The genus
contains around 10 species. Various species of this genus occur in southern
Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia and the Southwest Pacific. They are generally
small to medium sized dragonflies. These dragonflies are often noticed
due to their colours. Males are generally very brightly coloured, ranging
from totally red in several species, to the rich blue of Australia's C.
nigrifrons. As with many Libellulid species, the females tend to be dull
brown or orange.
Crocothemis sanguinolenta (Burmeister,
1839) is a medium-sized dragonfly with dazzling scarlet colouration and
a long, slender body. It is found all over Africa, Middle East, and southern
Asia. Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical dry forests, subtropical
or tropical moist lowland forests, subtropical or tropical dry shrubland,
subtropical or tropical moist shrubland, rivers, intermittent rivers, shrub-dominated
wetlands, freshwater marshes, and intermittent freshwater marshes. Common
names for this species include Little Scarlet, Slim Scarlet-darter and
The species has a small patch of
yellow at the base of the wings, and this feature is variable in size between
populations, with some scientists recognising two subspecies of Crocothemis
sanguinolenta arabica and Crocothemis sanguinolenta sanguinolenta.
It is separated from Trithemis annulata
(Purple-blushed Darter) by having a long brown pterostigma (the coloured
cell near the end of the wing)
It is widespread all over Africa,
Middle East, and southern Asia. In East Africa the species is common and
widespread in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, and Malawi. Its occurrence in Burundi
is assumed. Assessed as IUCN Red List as Least Concern in view of its wide
distribution, and because it is unlikely to be declining fast enough to
qualify for listing in a more threatened category.