Holotypus m [von *holo-, griech. typos = Prägung, Typ], das von einem Autor bei der Beschreibung einer neuen Art festgelegte (designierte) „typische“ Individuum (Typus-Verfahren der taxonomischen Nomenklatur). Nach den erst im 20. Jahrhundert strenger festgelegten internationalen Nomenklaturregeln muß es ein einzelnes, entsprechend gekennzeichnetes Exemplar sein. Bei Sexualdimorphismus kann entweder nur das Männchen oder nur das … Read more HOLOTYPE

Where the male and female symbols came from…

Representing two planets, iron, copper and a couple of Olympian gods, the classical symbols for male and female pack a lot of meaning into a few squiggly lines. The symbols themselves are ancient, and the associations they make date back to the dawn of civilization. The ancients, after observing how the movements of heavenly bodies … Read more Where the male and female symbols came from…

Why beetles have “hard” elytra?

One of the most important features of Coleoptera is their ‘elytra’, the hard exoskeletal which covers their wings. The ‘elytra’ helps to protect the beetle but also has many other functions, too. Some beetles trap moisture in their wings and the elytra protects it from drying in heat and wind, this means the beetles can … Read more Why beetles have “hard” elytra?

Why do entomologists kill insects?

A non-taxonomist’s perspective… Admittedly, this isn’t really a direct user submission per se, but it’s a question which comes up in the entomological world enough to warrant a discussion. Collecting of insects is not controversial amongst entomologists, but seems to strike a chord with many people who are interested in entomology. There’s the perception that … Read more Why do entomologists kill insects?

What are ‘good species’?

Recently in TREE, Mallet [1,2], argued for an operational, concept-free definition of species as ‘genotypic clusters’, asserting ‘that species are man-made groupings’ [2]. However, Mallet resorts to the traditional notion of ‘good’ species for final arbitration regarding what degree of variation is appropriate for the species-level taxon. This is a poor species definition for two reasons. … Read more What are ‘good species’?

Plants And The Human Brain

Why humans think like insects… Similarities between human and insect brains could be the reason why humans are attracted to plant-derived chemicals, such as tea, coffee, tobacco and drugs, according to a new book. Professor David Kennedy, of Northumbria University, Newcastle, believes his new book, Plants and the Human Brain, answers the question as to … Read more Plants And The Human Brain

Invasive Ladybugs – Secrets Of Their Success

Not everyone has what it takes to be a successful invader. Most species that find their way to foreign lands starve, get eaten or otherwise fail to establish themselves in significant numbers. But every so often an organism thrives so well in its new terrain, that it ends up trampling much of the native flora … Read more Invasive Ladybugs – Secrets Of Their Success

How many species are there?

An interesting research note just came out in the American Naturalist by Hamilton and colleagues entitled quantifying uncertainty in estimation of tropical arthropod species richness. I retweeted a Science Daily twitter feed on this that had a terribly misleading opening line: “New calculations reveal that the number of species on Earth is likely to be … Read more How many species are there?

Insect of the year 2012

Der Hirschkäfer – “Insekt des Jahres” 2012   (Lucanus cervus LINNAEUS, 1758) Bernhard Klausnitzer Zusammenfassung: Der Hirschkäfer (Lucanus cervus LINNAEUS, 1758) wird als “Insekt des Jahres” 2012 vorgestellt. Eine kurze Übersicht zur Biologie wird vorgelegt, und auf die kulturgeschichtliche Bedeutung der Art wird hingewiesen. Seit 1999 wird von einem Kuratorium das “Insekt des Jahres” erwählt. … Read more Insect of the year 2012