New dragonfly species discovered in Vietnam

This is a video of a “Familiar Bluet” damselfly filmed taking off from its perch. Filmed at 1000 frames per second and slowed down so that the motion of the wings can be seen.

From Wildlife Extra:

Survey finds dragonfly haven off Vietnam

The newly recorded species are:

* Rhyothemis obsolescens
* Lyriothemis mortoni
* Pseudagrion williamsonii
* Prodasineura auricolor

50 species of dragonfly and damselfly inhabit 1 small island reserve

An entomologist commissioned by Wildlife At Risk (WAR) to undertake a comprehensive survey of the butterflies of Phu Quoc Island has encountered four species of dragonfly and damselfly never previously recorded in Vietnam. The insects were observed during butterfly surveys conducted by Bui Huu Manh between April and July 2007.

These latest discoveries provide further evidence that the island of Phu Quoc, just 600kms sq. is a largely unexplored biological treasure trove of nationally, regionally and, in some cases, globally important species of fauna and flora.

Lyriothemis mortoni, for example, is extremely rare and has only been recorded from a handful of sites in south-east Asia. Significantly, Rhyothemis obsolescens appears to be very common on Phu Quoc, yet this species does not even feature on the official Vietnam checklist, an indication that comprehensive biological surveys of the island are urgently needed.

Over 50 species of dragonfly and damselfly species have now been recorded on Phu Quoc island in the past year alone, mainly through casual observation as a by-product of the butterfly surveys conducted on behalf of WAR. An official survey is likely to yield further interesting revelations about this relatively neglected insect group.

WAR has been working on the island for the past two years in order to support the sustainable development of ecotourism and raise awareness of the biodiversity value of Phu Quoc and the Kien Giang Biosphere Reserve. WAR consultants have already conducted a number of small-scale animal and plant surveys.

The results have been incorporated into guides, reports and other publications, many of which are available in both Vietnamese and English on the WAR website.

See also here.

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