|Epitheca is a genus of dragonflies
in the family Corduliidae. They are commonly known as Baskettails.
Epitheca bimaculata (Charpentier,
1825), Two-spotted Dragonfly or Eurasian Baskettail, is the only species
of its genus in Europe. It's essentially an Eastern European species with
some scattered populations further West, e.g. in France, Germany and Scandinavia.
It's a large dragonfly, length 55 - 65 mm, with peculiarly long legs and
a dark patch at the base of the hind wing which gives the species its scientific
name. The adult are said to be tireless fliers which only rarely perch.
The species is dull brown in appearance,
wings with an orange hue, especially evident in the leading edges, dark
patches on inner edge of hind wing. In male, abdomen is wide starting and
chipper, segments 1 and 2 are orange and black with orange in the other
segments formed distinctive V-shape. Female is like the male, but more
wider build and orange spots on the sides of the abdomen are much more
extensive, so that there will be a black, tapered stripe on the center
of the abdomen.
Three subspecies are identified:
Epitheca bimaculata altaica (Belyshev, 1951)
Epitheca bimaculata bimaculata (Charpentier, 1825)
Epitheca bimaculata sibirica (Selys, 1887)
Epitheca bimaculata is found in North
East Asian Russia, Caucasus, European Russia, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Russian
Federation, Southern Far East Russia, South Siberia, Ural, West Siberia.