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Yellow Emperor Dragonfly - Hemianax papuensis


This page contains information and pictures about Yellow Emperor Dragonflies that we found in the Brisbane area, Queensland, Australia. 

Body length 65mm, wingspan 105mm 

The Yellow Emperor Dragonfly is commonly called Baron Dragonfly in New Zealand. This dragonfly is a very large dragonfly. They never stop flying over the pond. They are common in Brisbane. During a sunny summer day, you will always see a Yellow Emperor flying over any piece of flash water in Brisbane. It is usually the largest dragonfly on the water and will chase away any flying object on its path. The dragonfly is pale yellow in colour with grey pattern on the body. The costa, or the front edges of its wings are pale yellow. 

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The Yellow Emperor Dragonfly spend most of the time flying, defending its territory and hunting for prey, seldom rest on a sunny day. In flight it appear yellowish. At the end of its abdomen there is the yellow spot as the 'tail light'. The males aggressively defend large territories over the water, can be as large as 50 meters on a section of slow running water. If there is the intruder, it will always be driven away by a series of noisy air battles. The dragonfly usually has its patrol flight one meter about the water in quite a routine path within its territory.
The second picture above rest the dragonfly rested on grass during late evening. The dragonfly rested there overnight until next morning. 
The picture above shows the Yellow Emperor pair laying eggs in the plant under the water, still in tandem position. Sometimes we can see the female Yellow Emperor laying eggs alone. The female resembles male. The breeding sites are ponds and slow running water with thick vegetations. More information about reproduction please visit this page.
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The moulting skin left after the larva climbed up from the water and emerged as an adult Yellow Emperor Dragonfly, length 40mm 

The Yellow Emperor Dragonfly has two pair of wings which are about equal in size. They are clean in colour. The construction is typical example of dragonfly's and damselfly's wings. There are only five main vein stems. The black pterostigma is carried near the wing tip. The main veins and the crossveins form the wing venation pattern. The venation patterns are different in different species. The venation pattern is useful for species identification. 

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Last updated: November 06, 2004.