Scientific Name: Mortonagrion arthuri
Common Name: Arthur’s Midget
Mortonagrion arthuri is a locally rare species of damselfly which is confined to mangrove habitats around Singapore, particularly Pulau Ubin, Pulau Semakau and Sungei Cina.
Their natural habitats are inlets of mangrove swamps where they like to rest on the tip of an emergent twig of mangrove trees.
Male has two color forms. Blue form and yellow form. The blue form has blue stripes on the side of the thorax and blue postocular spots; while the yellow form has similar features but in yellow. Male also has distinct blue spots on the segment 8 of it’s abdomen.
Females are duller in color. It has brown thorax with similar stripes to the male. Young female also has the distinct spots on it’s abdomen. Older female has the spots completely obscured.
In general, males of mortonagrion arthuri are more rarer than females.
Males of this species are generally hard to find. I have seen a couple of females at Pulau Ubin but not a single male.
I have better luck at Sungei Cina, where I managed to captured a couple of males both in blue and yellow form.
In Singapore, not many photos of this species has been available in the internet. I hope these photos could add to the archive of the diversity of odonata found in Singapore’s natural environment.
Scientific Name: Trithemis festiva
Common Name: Indigo Dropwing
I believed everyone has seen a blue-coloured Trithemis festiva before, but has anyone seen a yellow one?
A few years ago while I was walking along a gravel track inside Lor Asrama , a small dragonfly suddenly fell from the sky and landed in front of me. Noticing it was something I have never seen, I immediately took a few shots as it wriggled on the ground, dying from the immense heat on the dirt road.
Later, I moved and placed it on top of a small plant under some shades and took some photos.
I believed it could be the sub-adult male of Trithemis festiva which not many people had seen before.
What do you think?
It was strange why wasn’t the sub-adult male as frequently seen as the adult male. It could be that the young male prefer to reside in the tree top before venturing into the nearby streams for mating when it becomes adult male.
In this post, I would like to showcase a few species of dragonfly and damselfly which could only be found in the mangrove swamps around Singapore’s coastal regions. Areas which I had visited include Sungei Buloh Wetalnd Reserves, Pulau Ubin, and the mangrove swamps around the North Western part of Singapore.
Some species are uncommon such as mangrove dwarf (Raphismia bispina) whilst others are rare, such as the elusive mangrove marshal (Pornothemis starrei) and Arthur’s Midget (Mortonagrion arthuri).
Raphismia bispina (Mangrove Dwarf)
They are uncommon species and one of the few dragonfly species that lives and breeds in the salt water in mangrove swamps. I have seen and recorded this species at Pulau Ubin, SBWR, and Sungei Cina.
A sub-adult male. The thorax is slated blue with some yellow streaks at the sides of the abdomen.
A female pornothemis starrei.
A female Mortonagrion arthuri resting at the tip of the root of mangrove tree. It has brown thorax with blue stripes. Similar to males, it also has distinct blue markings on segment 8 of the abdomen.
2. Pornothemis starrei (Mangrove Marshal)
This species is rare in Singapore. I have come across it once at SBWR and Pulau Ubin and a few occasions at sungei cina.
3. Mortonagrion arthuri ( Arthur’s Midget)
Mortonagrion arthuri is also a mangrove species and could be found at Pulau Ubin and Sungei Cina.
Although not exclusively associate with mangrove habitats, the following two species of dragonfly could also be found there.
It is important to preserve our limited mangrove habitats so the rare species of plants and animals could continue to thrive there.