Palpopleura albifrons Legrand, 1979
Pale-faced Widow

Type locality: Makokou, Gabon


Male is similar to P. portia and P. lucia by (a) sides of thorax dark, often with pale stripes; (b) basal black on wings solid, extends beyond node. However, differs by (1) being localised from N Zambia to Gabon; (2) smaller size, Hw 16-19 mm; (3) frons and vertex cream-coloured rather than blue-black with maturity; and paler than brownish face below it; (4) flattened dorsum of frons weakly demarcated, rather than with distinct angular borders; (5) dark field in all wings at most extends to touch Pt, rather brown with blurred yellow margins. [Adapted from Dijkstra & Clausnitzer 2014]

Habitat description

Mostly standing and often temporary waters, but also seeps and springs, in open landscapes or open areas in forest. Usually boggy and often with emergent and aquatic vegetation, and probably coarse detritus and a sandy and/or soft (like muddy) bottom. From 0 to 700 m above sea level, but possibly up to 1500.


confirmed: Angola; Congo-Brazzaville; Democratic Republic of the Congo; Gabon; Zambia

Male © Jens Kipping

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):

Female; Democratic Republic of Congo, Province Orientale, East of Isangi © Dijkstra, K.-D.B.

Male; Gabon, Haut-Ogooué, Léconi © Dijkstra, K.-D.B., Nicolas Mézière & Cédric Vanappelghem

Adult, male; Angola, Uige Province, Negage © Dijkstra, K.-D.B.


  • Legrand, J. (1979). Palpopleura albifrons, n, sp., nouveau diastatopidinae de la forét Gabonaise (Odonata libellulidae). Revue francaise Entomologie Nouvelle, 4, 179-181. [PDF file]

Citation: Dijkstra, K.-D.B (editor). African Dragonflies and Damselflies Online. [2024-07-20].