DragonflyPix

Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger)

• English name: Vagrant Emperor
• German name: Schabracken-Königslibelle
• French name: Anax porte-selle
• Dutch name: Zadellibel
• Swedish name: Brun kejsartrollslända
• Norwegian name: Trekkøyenstikker
• Finnish name: Kulku-ukonkorento
• Danish name: Brun kejserguldsmed
• Italian name: Imperatore migrante
• Czech name: šídlo hnědé
• Slovenian name: Afriški minljivec
• Bulgarian name: Прелетен пъстролет

Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger)

Not present
Present before 1990
Present after 1990

Present before and after 1990
Present after 2015

Distribution map Anax ephippiger

Map data based on J.-P. Boudot & V. J. Kalkman (eds.),
Atlas of the European Dragonflies and Damselflies


General ➤ a large species which regularly visits the Mediterranean area and occasionally ventures further up north
Classification • suborder: Anisoptera (dragonflies); family: Aeshnidae
Conservation status • IUCN Red List Europe: Least Concern
Scientific name Anax ephippiger (Burmeister, 1839)
Distribution • click or tap the Map button above
Notes • the female oviposits in tandem, contact-guarded by the male
  • seldom manages to establish viable long-term populations in Europe
  • aeshnids are 'fliers': they spend a lot of time on the wing and seldom hang up for a rest
  • also known as Hemianax ephippiger
Habitat • shallow, warm and often temporary pools and ponds
Dimensions • typical body length: 61-70 mm; hindwing: 43-48 mm
Both sexesHead➤ the eyes are brown
  • the top of the frons bears three dark bars: in addition to the usual black bars at the top and bottom, there is a third, chocolate-brown bar
 Thorax• the thorax is beige-brown, without an antehumeral stripe
 Abdomen• the abdomen is beige-brown, with a thick dark mid-dorsal line
  • in immature animals the saddle on S2 is usually pale violet
MaleAbdomen➤ in mature males a sky-blue saddle covers the top (but not the sides) of S2
  • the upper appendages are tapered and pointed
FemaleAbdomen• the saddle on S2 is pale violet or may be absent altogether
  • the appendages are rounded and pointed
Photographs • nearly all of our photos below were made in the south of Italy
  • the photos we made in Central Italy (Emilia-Romagna) show immature animals at a site where a small population successfully reproduced from around 2006-2009

Line DrawingLineDrawing: the male's appendages in dorsal view.

Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger)
Male appendages in dorsal view
Drawing by Ruth Ilka Nüß
© 2013 Lehmann & Nüß and DragonflyPix.com

Click on a thumbnail to display the photograph (at 1200 x 800 pixels) in a new window.

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Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♂

1 / 20; PhotoID: Dr727 25/03/2016 15:01 Italy F8 1/640 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 2 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♂

2 / 20; PhotoID: Dr728 25/03/2016 15:04 Italy F8 1/400 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 3 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♂

3 / 20; PhotoID: Dr729 27/03/2016 10:46 Italy F8 1/400 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 4 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♂

4 / 20; PhotoID: Dr741 27/03/2016 10:49 Italy F8 1/500 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 5 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♂

5 / 20; PhotoID: Dr730 27/03/2016 11:01 Italy F8 1/320 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 6 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♂

6 / 20; PhotoID: Dr731 28/03/2016 09:40 Italy F8 1/200 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 7 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♀

7 / 20; PhotoID: Dr742 25/08/2007 09:51 Italy F8 1/100 180mm ISO100 Canon30D -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 8 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♂

8 / 20; PhotoID: Dr744 28/03/2016 10:15 Italy F8 1/320 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 9 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♂

9 / 20; PhotoID: Dr743 28/03/2016 10:25 Italy F8 1/200 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 10 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♂

10 / 20; PhotoID: Dr745 28/03/2016 10:53 Italy F8 1/80 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 11 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♂

11 / 20; PhotoID: Dr746 28/03/2016 11:07 Italy F8 1/400 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 12 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♀

12 / 20; PhotoID: Dr747 20/09/2014 10:04 Spain F8 1/350 180mm ISO200 Canon7D -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 13 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♀

13 / 20; PhotoID: Dr748 25/08/2007 10:47 Italy F5.6 1/200 180mm ISO200 Canon30D -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 14 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♂

14 / 20; PhotoID: Dr749 28/03/2016 11:09 Italy F8 1/400 180mm ISO200 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 15 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♂

15 / 20; PhotoID: Dr750 28/03/2016 11:40 Italy F8 1/250 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 16 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♀

16 / 20; PhotoID: Dr753 25/08/2007 12:04 Italy F5.6 1/400 180mm ISO200 Canon30D -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 17 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♀

17 / 20; PhotoID: Dr751 29/03/2016 11:23 Italy F8 1/320 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
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Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♀

18 / 20; PhotoID: Dr752 29/03/2016 11:32 Italy F8 1/320 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 19 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♀

19 / 20; PhotoID: Dr754 29/03/2016 11:37 Italy F8 1/100 180mm ISO100 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF
Anax ephippiger, thumbnail 20 / 20
Vagrant Emperor (Anax ephippiger) ♀

20 / 20; PhotoID: Dr755 12/04/2017 10:49 Italy F8 1/1000 180mm ISO400 Canon7D2 -Crop -Flash MF