Monday, July 23, 2018

211. Brachygonia oculata (Brauer, 1878)

Number: 211  
Family: Libellulidae   
Genus: Brachygonia    
Species: Brachygonia oculata
Common name(s): Pixie 
Synonyms: N/A    
Habitat: Swampy areas and very slow moving swampy streams
Province(s) sighted: Krathing Waterfall (Chantaburi)  
Sightings (by me): I saw two males
In flight (that I have seen): July   
Species easily confused with: None

One species I have always wanted to see and never really had the opportunity as it was thought to be a southern species finally materialised recently. At a seriously dingy swamp area heavily covered in trees and bushes that ripped you to death and with enormous black clouds looming, I was searching for a little species that Noppadon Makbun had told me could be found there. After searching for about 30 mins and being torn to shreds, I almost gave up. The lighting was just too bad. Then, in the corner of my eye, I saw a tiny bit of white fluff move a little in the distance. I looked at it for a moment and thought it was my imagination. Then, as I stood up, it moved again. This time I focused on it through the gloom... OMG! That was it! Soooooo tiny I almost missed it! I was looking for something about the size of Brachydiplax farinosa but it was much smaller! I started taking shots of it and, to my horror, my lens and camera had steamed up. Arrrgghhh! I tried everything to clear it, but it just kept on fogging up again. So... I just sat there and waited. And waited. I eventually gave up and went out into the open so it could get a bit of sun which eventually worked. Upon my return, it was gone! Noooo! I had missed it! I searched for ages without success. Then, right in the corner and deep in the gloom, I saw him again. This time I fired off a load of shots. They were all too dark but they were good enough record shots. Then, just as I was about to leave, he flew a little higher and to an area where the sun shone through a little (just enough for a good shot)... I fired off a few shot and knew I had him in the bag! Brachygonia oculata, male! A superb species and a bit of a lifer for me -- though I had no idea it was so small! I returned the next day with a couple of the guys and we found another male. This time, the lighting was a little better and I got a few other shots. 

The Male
Nothing really to say about this male, other than it is awesome!!! It cannot really be confused with any other species with its brilliant orange body with a gorgeous white patch on the abdomen and black end segments... what a cool dude. 
Here is the second male... ever so slightly brighter conditions
 And even closer...