Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Arthropoda Insecta Odonata Libellulidae

Scientific Name: Orthetrum sabina
Species Authority: (Drury, 1773)
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Slender Skimmer
Lepthemis divisa Selys, 1878
Libellua leptura Burmeister, 1839
Libellula ampullacea Schneider, 1845
Libellula gibba Fabricius, 1798
Libellula sabina Drury, 1770
Orthetrum nigrescens Bartenev, 1929
Orthetrum viduatum Lieftinck, 1942
Taxonomic Source(s): Schorr, M. and Paulson, D. 2015. World Odonata List. Tacoma, Washington, USA Available at: (Accessed: 10 July 2015).
Taxonomic Notes: A subspecies Orthetrum sabina viduatum Lieftinck, 1942, has been described from the highlands of central New Guinea. It is sometimes regarded as a synonym of O. sabina (Drury, 1773) ( A genetic study of the species throughout its huge range is needed to understand its variability and possible subspeciation.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2009-10-11
Assessor(s): Mitra, A.
Reviewer(s): Allen, D., Dow, R.A., Clausnitzer, V. & García, N.
Contributor(s): Boudot, J.-P., Schneider, W. & Samraoui, B.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Alomari, K.
This is a very widespread species that is well adapted to various kinds of habitats in fresh and brackish waters, including disturbed ones. It is assessed as Least Concern.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2010 Least Concern (LC)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Orthetrum sabina is an oriental species showing a huge range going from Australia, Japan and Micronesia to North Africa.
Countries occurrence:
Afghanistan; Algeria; Armenia (Armenia); Australia (New South Wales, Northern Territory, Queensland, Western Australia); Azerbaijan; Bahrain; Bangladesh; Bhutan; Brunei Darussalam; Cambodia; Chad; China (Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, Hubei, Sichuan, Yunnan); Cyprus; Egypt (Egypt (African part), Sinai); Eritrea; Ethiopia; Georgia (Abkhaziya, Adzhariya, Gruziya); Greece; Hong Kong; India (Assam, Bihar, Himachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Punjab, Tripura, Uttaranchal, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal); Indonesia (Bali, Jawa, Kalimantan, Lesser Sunda Is., Maluku, Papua, Sulawesi, Sumatera); Iran, Islamic Republic of; Iraq; Israel; Japan; Jordan; Kazakhstan; Kuwait; Lao People's Democratic Republic; Lebanon; Libya; Malaysia (Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah, Sarawak); Micronesia, Federated States of ; Myanmar; Nepal; New Caledonia; Oman; Pakistan; Papua New Guinea (Papua New Guinea (main island group)); Philippines; Qatar; Russian Federation; Samoa; Saudi Arabia; Singapore; Solomon Islands; Somalia; Sri Lanka; Sudan; Syrian Arab Republic; Taiwan, Province of China; Tajikistan; Thailand; Timor-Leste; Tunisia; Turkey (Turkey-in-Asia); Turkmenistan; United Arab Emirates; Uzbekistan; Viet Nam; Yemen (North Yemen, Socotra, South Yemen)
Upper elevation limit (metres): 2300
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This is a very common species over much of its huge range.
Current Population Trend: Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species occupies a broad range of slow flowing and still water habitats, from ponds and lakes to wet rice fields, irrigation ditch and marshes. It is very tolerant of high salt contents and to habitat disturbance.
Systems: Terrestrial; Freshwater
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat: No
Movement patterns: Not a Migrant

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is not utilized.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species is not threatened.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: No conservation measures are needed but a study about the genetic variability or homogeneity of the species throughout its range is recommended.

Citation: Mitra, A. 2013. Orthetrum sabina. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2013: e.T165470A17533255. . Downloaded on 05 October 2015.
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