Genus Neurogomphus Karsch, 1890


  • scientific: Oxygomphus Lacroix, 1921 [agilis]; Karschiogomphus Schouteden, 1934 [ghesquierei = martininus]

Type species: Neurogomphus fuscifrons Karsch, 1890


Endemic to tropical Africa with fourteen known species. A feature of the fairly small to large (hindwing 26-41 mm) species is that the conspicuous pale marking on the abdomen club, if present, is on abdominal segment 8, not 7 as is usual in gomphids. Adults are rarely seen, probably because most species inhabit larger rivers and emerge seasonally. They can suddenly appear and, unusually for gomphids, are rather slow and approachable, perching with hanging abdomen. [Adapted from Dijkstra & Clausnitzer 2014]


Male of genus is similar to Mastigogomphus by (a) posterior hamules 2-6 times longer than wide, leaning forward; (b) anal triangle of 3 cells, although sometimes also 4; (c) hind femur longer than breadth of head, although it reaches halfway S2 at most and bears only small spines; (d) S10 about as long as S9, basal half sharply constricted; (e) cerci without both an inner branch or ventral tooth near base; (f) branches of epiproct diverge widely, often extending laterally of cerci (dorsal view), always terminating in simply pointed apices (lateral view). However, differs by (1) occiput under 3x wider than high, border convex, often notched or denticulate; (2) usually at least labrum partly brown to black; (3) postdorsal stripes long, broadly fused to collar and often to antehumeral stripes, which are frequently reduced; (4) Hw Cux at most just proximal to distal border of anal triangle; (5) cerci diverge, eclipsing branches of epiproct in dorsal view. [Adapted from Dijkstra & Clausnitzer 2014]

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.


  • Pinhey, E. (1967). The genus Neurogomphus Karsch (Odonata: Gomphidae). Journal of the Entomological Society of Southern Africa, 29, 64-37. [PDF file]
  • Cammaerts, R. (2004). Taxonomic studies on African Gomphidae (Odonata, Anisoptera) 2. A revision of the genus Neurogomphus Karsch, with the description of some larvae. Belgian Journal of Entomology, 6, 91-239. [PDF file]
  • Pinhey, E.C.G. (1962). New or little-known dragonflies (Odonata) of Central and Southern Africa. Occasional Papers National Museum Southern Rhodesia, 26, 892-911. [PDF file]
  • Karsch, F. (1899). Odonaten von Johann-Alrecht-Höhe (Nord- Kamerun), gesammelt von Herrn Leopold Conradt. Entomologische Nachrichten, 25, 161-176. [PDF file]
  • Fraser, F.C. (1949). Gomphidae from the Belgian Congo (order Odonata). Revue Zoologie Botanique Africaines, 42, 101-138. [PDF file]
  • Schouteden, H. (1934). Annales Musee Congo belge Zoologie 3 Section 2, 3, 1-84. [PDF file]

Citation: Dijkstra, K.-D.B (editor). African Dragonflies and Damselflies Online. [2024-06-16].