; order Odonata, suborder Anisoptera)
A cosmopolitan family of large, swift-flying, hawker dragonflies which are usually strikingly marked with blue or green, although several genera are normally a uniform dark brown: Anax imperator (emperor dragonfly) is one of the largest dragonflies in Eurasia. Aeshnids have similar triangles in the fore and hind wings, a well-defined but small anal loop in the hind wings, the eyes broadly contiguous across the top of the head, the ocelli in a triangle around a raised tubercle, and the ovipositor complete and not projecting beyond the long anal appendages. The larvae have large eyes and elongate bodies. More than 430 extant species have been described.
Subjects: Zoology and Animal Sciences.