Critical species of Odonata in Madagascar


Madagascar has approximately 175 species of Odonata. Of the Anisoptera ca 60% is endemic and of the Zygoptera almost 95%. The endemic species can roughly be separated into ‘new endemics’ that are probably recent arrivals from the African mainland and ‘old endemics’. The latter group includes many members of the families Megapodagrionidae, Platycnemididae and Corduliidae, which are much more diverse here than on the African continent. Many of these species belong to endemic genera and appear to be restricted to rainforest habitat. The rate of deforestation on Madagascar is alarming, and therefore the majority of ‘old endemics’ is potentially threatened. One hundred and eleven species, 64% of the fauna, are listed as being of primary concern and their conservation status needs to be assessed immediately. Research on Madagascar’s Odonata is urgently needed in all aspects from basic inventories and systematic work to studies on ecology, biogeography and conservation related issues.

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