|Tholymis is a small genus of dragonflies.
They are tropical species, active mostly at dawn and dusk. The genus contains
only 2 species:
Tholymis citrina (Hagen, 1867) - Evening Skimmer
Tholymis tillarga (Fabricius, 1798) - Twister, Coral-tailed Cloud Wing
Tholymis tillarga (Fabricius, 1798),
the Coral-tailed Cloudwing, is a species of dragonfly found from tropical
West Africa to the Pacific Islands. It is a medium sized red dragonfly
with brown and white hindwing patch. Tholymis tillarga female and immatured
male have similar wing pattern: both wings are transparent with the hind
wing translucent brown near the base. Matured Male has additional opaque
white patches beside the brown patches that look like cloud hence the common
name Coral-tailed Cloudwing.
In males, the abdomen is 28 to 33
mm, hindwing is 33 to 37 mm and the total body length ranges from 44 to
47 mm. The face is rusty brown with a crimson flush. Eyes brown capped
with reddish olivaceous below. Thorax reddish above golden yellow or olivaceous
on sides. Legs rustybrown. Wings transparent with a broad fan shaped golden
brown patch on the hindwing. This is bordered by a milky white patch. Wing
spot reddish brown. Abdomen bright rusty-red.
The female is pale brown in colour,
without the white patch on the hindwing. The abdomen is 27 - 31 mm, hind
wing 31 - 37 mm. Head and thorax olivaceous without any red tinge. Hindwing
brown without the milky white border and the brown patch is very pale and
obscure. Abdomen olivaceous brown. The immature male looks like a female.
It is a crepuscular dragonfly, active
at the time of sunset and flies at night. Frequently comes to light at
night. This fast flying dragonfly is very difficult to follow. Commonly
found in ponds, marshes and tanks.
The species has a wide distribution
in all parts of the world except Europe and the Americas. It is widespread
in Africa, Asia, Australia, and Indian Ocean Islands. In Africa, it occurs
in every country south of the Sahara. In Asia the species extends throughout
India, eastwards to southern China and Japan and southwards throughout
southeast Asia to Australia, New Guinea, Micronesia and Samoa. This is
a widespread and disturbance tolerant species with no known major widespread
threats. It is therefore assessed by IUCN Red List as Least Concern.
Subramanian, K. A. (2005). Dragonflies
and Damselflies of Peninsular India