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R. C. L. Perkins: 100 Years of Hawaiian Entomology

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Title:R. C. L. Perkins: 100 Years of Hawaiian Entomology
Authors:Liebherr, James K.
Polhemus, Dan A.
Date Issued:Oct 1997
Publisher:University of Hawaii Press
Citation:Liebherr JK, Polhemus DA. 1997. R. C. L. Perkins: 100 years of Hawaiian entomology. Pac Sci 51(4): 343-355.
Abstract:R. C. L. Perkins comprehensively surveyed the insect fauna of the
Hawaiian Islands one century ago, initially as the collector for the Fauna Hawaiiensis
survey project and subsequently as an entomologist with the Hawaiian Sugar Planters'
Association. The Hawai'i he observed was in a period of rapid transformation.
Thus, he has the unique distinction of being the first and last person to record the
habits of many native Hawaiian species. The islands on which he collected were
already heavily impacted by exotic herbivores-including goats, cattle, sheep, and
pigs-yet he was able to sample remnant pockets of native vegetation that are now
lost in a jungle of exotic introductions. His broad understanding of insect natural
history allowed him to document ably the habits of insect groups that we are
only beginning to understand 100 yr later. Moreover, his collections and extensive
taxonomic contributions afford us a firm foundation for future taxonomic and evolutionary
studies of the uniquely rich and highly endemic Hawaiian insect biota.
Appears in Collections: Pacific Science Volume 51, Number 4, 1997

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