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 Major Groups | Insecta (insects) | Odonata (dragonflies, damselflies) | Macromiidae


Major Group: Insecta
Order: Odonata
Family: Macromiidae (formerly part of Corduliidae)
Genus: Macromia
This family is represented in Australia by a single genus, Macromia.

Descriptive Features:

  • head rather small and with frontal lobe produced vertically from between antennae
  • frontal plate developed
  • prementum ladle-shaped with 2 distinct groups of setae
  • labial palps with palpal setae and well developed distal dentations bearing setae
  • antennae 7-segmented
  • pronotum laterally variably lobed
  • legs extremely long
  • wing pads parallel
  • abdomen wide, with middorsal and lateral spines
  • abdomen with middorsal spines on segments 3-9 and lateral spines on segments 7-9
  • Total length: 26.0 - 29.0 mm

    Macromia tillyardi

    Taxonomic Checklist: Species
    Macromia tillyardi Martin, 1906
    Macromia viridescens Tillyard, 1911

    Distribution: E Qld, N Qld, N NT

    Sensitivity Rating: SIGNAL grade 8

    Functional Feeding Group: predators


    East Alligator River, Cahills Crossing Kakadu NT

    Ecology: Adults are commonly known as 'cruisers'.
    Instream habitat: Macromia larvae inhabit streams, rivers and riverine pools. They are found hiding within mud, silt, gravel, rocks and litter in the benthic zone.
    Feeding ecology: Larvae are predators.
    Habit: Macromia larvae have long spidery legs which they use to move about in littoral roots and weeds.
    Life history: Females only appearing at the water to mate and lay eggs. The female lays her eggs by tapping the water with the tip of her abdomen to release her eggs as flies from spot to spot. Emergence usually occurs at night.


    Information Sources: Theischinger 2001, Corbet 1999, Silsby 2001, Theischinger & Hawking 2006
    Key to Species: Theischinger & Endersby 2009, Theischinger 2001