Friday, 27 November 2009

Biologia Centrali-Americana online version

The full text and plates of Biologia Centrali-Americana can be found online here. While it's not Pacific-focussed it is an extremely interesting and informative document with a whole lot of valuable plates, such as this one. With three volumes worth of weevil stuff, and a decent section on Carpophilus, I will be spending a bit of time here I think...

While on the topic of Caribbean fauna, Father Sanchez's website has a lot of very good photos of a huge range of the flora and fauna of the Puerto Rico. He's a Catholic priest, and his passion for both Christ and nature is really inspiring.

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Pacific species described in Genus

Eastern European taxonomists are prolific. Over the past couple of years, a few have described a fair number of Pacific Island species of scydmaenid leaf beetles, jumping spiders in the journal Genus, published by the Polish Taxonomical Society.

These include nine species of Galerucinae from New Caledonia, the jumping spiders Lagnus monteithorum from Fiji and Phintella caledoniensis from New Caledonia, and thee scydmaenid beetles from New Guinea: Paraneseuthia guineana, P. devia and Cephennodes papuanus.

All of these papers are rather standard and dry (unless you're really into the taxa!) taxonomic papers, but there's some pretty cool photos in the spider papers....

Beenen R. 2008. Contribution to the knowledge of Galerucinae of New Caledonia (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). Genus 19(1): 65-87

Jałoszyński P. 2008. First record of the occurrence of Eutheiini and Cephenniini in New
Guinea, with descriptions of new species of Paraneseuthia Franz and Cephennodes Reitter
(Coleoptera: Scydmaenidae). Genus 19(1): 37-44

Jałoszyński P. 2009. Paraneseuthia guineana n. sp. from Indonesian part of New Guinea
(Coleoptera: Scydmaenidae). Genus 20(1): 23-26

Patoleta B. 2008. Description of a new species of Lagnus L. Koch, 1879 from Fiji archipelago (Araneae: Salticidae). Genus 19(4): 717-720

Patoleta B. 2009. Description of a new species of Phintella Strand in Bösenberg et Strand, 1906 from New Caledonia (Araneae: Salticidae). Genus 20(3): 539-543

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Bat flies of the Pacific

I didn't realise that there were bat-flies in the Pacific. I had never actually thought about them until I came across an old paper by one B. Jobling in the library on the bat fly family Streblidae. Turns out, there's a good number of species in the region: 15 according to the Australasian and Oceanian Diptera Catalog. Some of them have rather large ranges--Brachytarsina amboinensis is found from India and Okinawa, through the Philippines and Indonesia to Australia and New Caledonia.

While it seems that for the most part, bat flies tend to move from host to host with abandon, there are some which are only found on a single bat species. Brachytarsina buxtoni from Fiji and Samoa is only found on Emballonura semicaudata, while B. rouxi from New Caledonia is only found on Notopteris neocaledonica. Jobling reckons this is because these bats roost separately, preventing these species from colonising other bat species.

Jobling B. 1951. A record of the Streblidae from the Philippines and other Pacific Islands, including morphology of the abdomen, host-parasite relationship and geographical distribution, and and with descriptions of five new species (Diptera). Transactions of the Royal Entomological Society of London 102(4): 211-246