Onychogomphus forcipatus – Small Pincertail

Onychogomphus forcipatus (Small Pincertail) is a medium sized gomphid. The terminal appendages of male Small Pincertails are shaped like 3 large hooks, hence the vernacular name.
Small Pincertails can be confused with Large Pincertail (O. uncatus). The two species can be distinguished on the basis of the black markings on the thorax, which are more extensive on Large Pincertail.
Widespread from Scandinavia to northern Africa and eastward to Kazakhstan and Iran. Common in most of its range. Small Pincertails mostly inhabit rivers and streams with gravel beds and sometimes lakes.


Small Pincertails generally have green eyes, except for south-western populations (France, Spain, Portugal; subspecies unguiculatus), where they’re blue: