Zosteraeschna usambarica (Förster, 1906)
Forest Hawker


  • scientific: Aeshna ellioti Kirby, 1896 ssp. usambarica
  • vernacular: Elliot's H.

Type locality: Usambara Mts, Tanzania


Male differs from Z. ellioti by (1) ranging from S Kenya, through E Tanzania and Zimbabwe to N South Africa; (2) antehumerals triangular rather than linear; (3) mes- and metepimeral stripes broad rather than narrow, with space about 1.5x as wide. [Adapted from Dijkstra & Clausnitzer 2014]

Habitat description

Streams and standing waters shaded by or in open areas in forest. Especially pools in stream beds, often with emergent vegetation, coarse detritus and probably overhanging branches. From 1100 to 2700 m above sea level, but possibly down to 500.


confirmed: Kenya; Malawi; Mozambique; Republic of South Africa; Tanzania; Zimbabwe

Map citation: Clausnitzer, V., K.-D.B. Dijkstra, R. Koch, J.-P. Boudot, W.R.T. Darwall, J. Kipping, B. Samraoui, M.J. Samways, J.P. Simaika & F. Suhling, 2012. Focus on African Freshwaters: hotspots of dragonfly diversity and conservation concern. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 10: 129-134.

Barcode specimen(s):

Adult, male; Zimbabwe, Manicaland, Vumba Mts © Dijkstra, K.-D.B.


  • Förster, F. (1906). Die Libellulidengattungen von Afrika und Madagaskar. Jahresbericht Mannheimer Vereins Naturkunde, 72, 1-67.
  • Peters, G. & Theischinger, G. 2011. The genera of the afrotropical "Aeshnini": Afroaeschna gen. nov., Pinheyschna gen. nov. and Zosteraeschna gen. nov., with the description of Pinheyschna waterstoni spec. nov. (Anisoptera: Aeshnidae). Odonatologica 40(3):227-249. [PDF file]

Citation: Dijkstra, K.-D.B (editor). African Dragonflies and Damselflies Online. http://addo.adu.org.za/ [2024-07-21].