Lengthy oviposition by Pseudagrion hageni Karsch (Zygoptera: Coenagrionidae)
Notulae odonatologicae , Volume 2 - Issue 6 p. 103- 104
P. hageni oviposits endophytically into both living and non-living plant material. A complete oviposition sequence was observed in February 1984 at a partly shaded shallow pool on Bergwind Farm (near Rustenberg) in the Transvaal Province of South Africa. When first seen, a pair in tandem were flying from one grass stem to another at the water’s edge. They eventually settled on a dead stick of 1.5 cm in diameter, which was projecting 10 cm above the water surface, about 20 cm from the bank. The stick was embedded in the muddy pool bottom. The female, with the passive male attached, gradually descended the stick, probing with her ovipositor until below the water surface. She then proceeded to oviposit, gradually moving lower, until a maximum of 15 cm below the water surface and then travelled up and down and around the stick, ovipositing all the while. The male remained attached and passive. However, after 44 min of this, the male had had enough, and let go. He floated to the surface and struggled feebly until he managed to grasp a grass stem at the water’s edge. After crawling up the stem and restingfora few minutes, he flew off. The female continued oviposition. 79 min after first entering the water she crawled up the stick, and, with head, thorax and wings above the surface, rested for 4 min. She then descended again for a further 72 min. She eventually crawled up the stick into the air, rested and flew away. The total time spent under water was 2 hours and 31 minutes. I cannot find a longer period of underwater oviposition by Odonata in the literature. Is this a record?
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