The Hill Museum

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search


1.—PREFATORY NOTE.BULLETIN OF THE HILL MUSEUM THIS magazine has been established by Mr. J. J. Joicey for the purpose of giving to the entomological world the results of studies carried out at the Hill Museum, Witley. As the title of the magazine indicates, these studies deal solely with Lepidoptera. The collections at the Hill Museum have increased so largely, and the work on them is assuming such proportions, that it is felt we should have our own publication to deal with the results. It is proposed that this journal be issued half-yearly, but more frequent publication may be possible should there be a sufficient number of subscribers. In presenting the first number to our fellow lepidopterists, some account will be needed of the Hill Museum and its activities, and also of the principles adopted by us in Lepidopterology and of the methods employed.

2.—THE GROWTH OF THE HILL MUSEUM. The Museum was built by Mr. J. J. Joicey to house his increasing collections of exotic and British Lepidoptera. Mr. Joicey's interest in collecting these insects dates from 1906, and since this time he has been indefatigable in adding new forms to the collection. The celebrated collection of the late Henley Grose-Smith was purchased in 1910, and this was followed in 1912 by the purchase of the very extensive and widely-celebrated collection formed by the late Herbert Druce. These collections made it necessary to have a special building, and this was opened in 1913. About this time the Suffert collection was purchased, and also most of the types of species described by Wichgraf. There was also added a mass of material sent home from North Peru by Mr. A. E. Pratt, who, with his son Felix, made a collecting expedition on behalf of Mr. Joicey during 1912. They traversed a little-known part of North Peru, crossed the Andes, and descended the Amazon.These two intrepid collectors went out to Dutch New Guinea for Mr. Joicey in 1913, being joined by Mr. Pratt's younger son Charles.They sent home very large collections from the Arfak Mountains, the Schouten Islands and Waigeu.In 1916, Mr. Joicey acquired the collections of Lycaenidae and Hesperiidae formed by Colonel Charles Swinhoe, and in 1917 there was added the famous collection of South African Rhopalocera made by Roland Trimen, which formed the basis of his work on the South African Butterflies. In 1919, Mr. Joicey acquired the collection of Heliconius formed by the late Herr Riffarth and most of the Lepidoptera collected by Lieut. -Colonel Nurse in Aden, Baluchistan, and Somaliland. There was also added the very fine collection of Lycaeniidae and Hesperiidae formed by Mr. Hamilton H. Druce.The extensive collection of Lepidoptera, with the exception of the Indo-Australian Moths and types of Palaearctic species, formed by H. J. Elwes, Esq., was added in 1920. The same year saw the arrival of many thousands of Lepidoptera obtained by Mr. T. A. Barns on an expedition made through East Central Africa on behalf of Mr. Joicey.We must include some very large collections made by Mr. W. J. C. Frost, who visited the Islands of Tenimber, Am, Key, Misol, Obi and Sula, during 191(5—1918. From 1918—1920, Mr. C. Talbot Bowring sent many thousands of specimens from the Island of Hainan, and these were generously presented by him. During 1920 the brothers Pratt, working in Central Ceram on behalf of Mr. Joicey, sent home a thoroughly representative collection of the Lepidoptera met with in the high mountains of the island. The collection of Bhopalocera formed by Monsieur P. Dognin was acquired early in the present year, and includes the types of species described by him.Besides the material enumerated, much of a miscellaneous character was added from time to time from all parts of the world.The collection of British Lepidoptera was also increased very largely from 1912 to 1920. Many rare forms and aberrations were purchased at the sales of certain celebrated collections, and many additions to the local fauna were made by day and night collecting.Since 1915 the staff of the Museum has been increased to deal with the work entailed by the enormous accessions, and it now numbers seven persons.To house the increased collections, an annexe was added in 1920.This was adapted from an Army hut over eighty feet long by twenty feet wide, and serves the purpose very well, being insulated from damp and heated by anthracite stoves. Here was installed a photographic department, under the direction of Mr. H. J. Campbell, with facilities for photo-micrography.A small laboratory has been arranged in connection with the necessity for performing anatomical studies. A new technique for making preparations of genitalia is being perfected, and a full account of this will be given in a future number of this journal.

3.—GENERAL AIMS. The primary object of Mr. Joicey in making this collection of Lepidoptera is to advance in some way our scientific knowledge. When he sent out Mr. Pratt and his son to Northern Peru in 1912, it was in the hope that some species new to science would be obtained, as well as for the gratification to be afforded by adding largely to the collection. The formation of a large collection has its value, because without access to plenty of material studies can only be incomplete,and results are often erroneous. No proper view can be taken by comparing scattered material. Correct results are more readily obtained with good series of specimens from all localities, provided with proper data, and available in one place. No apology should be needed for amassing large collections, for research into the problems affecting such variable organisms as Lepidoptera is dependent for its success on the availability of large numbers of specimens.The naming of new forms is a necessary work which must be carried on by all who are possessed of new material, but we are concerned also with other investigations. We consider it important to work out all the material sent by the special collectors, and to prepare a full analysis and a list of the forms met with in each area. Suchfaunistic studies yield much information on distribution and relationship.Several are in preparation, and we propose to publish the results in this journal from time to time. Work on the structure of the genital armature has been commenced,and it is hoped that many doubtful questions affecting specific distinctions may be cleared up, and that we may ultimately extend the study in various ways.The present paper, dealing with the results of the Barns' Expedition,will be followed by one on the Lepidoptera of Hainan, and in due course there will appear similar papers on the Lepidoptera of the Schouten Islands, and on collections received from Dutch New Guinea,Waigeu, Mefor, Mysol, Key, Aru, Tenimber, Obi, Central Ceram and the Sula Islands.It is proposed to monograph the genus Delias, and material to this end is being accumulated. Certain studies on Mimicry phenomena are also in contemplation.

4.—PRINCIPLES ADOPTED IN THE CLASSIFICATION OF SPECIMENS. We accept the terminology in use by the majority of systematists, and distinguish between a geographical race, an individual variation, and a seasonal variation. We also agree that a figure of any sufficiently distinct form should be given whenever convenient, but do not consider the absence of such a figure to be entirely prejudicial to the description,and in any case no figure is of value unless accompanied by a description,however brief.The individuals of a species are grouped under their various races and arranged in geographical order as far as convenience permits. The individuals of each form are grouped according to locality or zoological area, the sexes being sorted in every such series. Any type specimens are placed at the end of a series comprising the form named. The name-label placed at the bottom of a series bears the original type locality. Where known forms are absent in the collection, a name-label, with figure if available, is placed in the position of the missing form.Families are arranged geographically instead of in any so-called phylogenetic order. The phylogeny of the forms of Lepidoptera cannot be said to be correctly understood at present. Not only does the geographical arrangement help us to an understanding of phylogenetic relationships, but it is of great value in finding any desired form in a great collection, and enables one to get some idea of the forms occuringin a given area.A card-index catalogue of the collection was commenced in 1915. Each card bears the name of the species with its original reference, also the number of the drawer in the collection, and a list of the localities of the specimens. A separate index is made for types. These indices are yet far from complete, but are compiled whenever a group is properly worked through.

5—PRINCIPLES ADOPTED IN THE CLASSIFICATION OF TYPES. The importance of the correct designation of type-specimens is often overlooked by nomenclators, and the describers of new forms are often faced with the difficulty of deciding what specimens exactly represent the previously-described allied form. The first scientific classification of types was made by Schuchert and Buckman in 1905 and forms the subject of a paper in the Annals and Mag. Nat. Hist, for that year, Ser. 7, vol. 16, p. 102. This scheme has been adopted by the Hill Museum in the classification of new forms, and in re-classifying the types of other authors which are contained in the collection. We take this opportunity of placing before entomologists thefollowing amendment to the paper of Schuchert and Buckman. Primary Types. Allotype (A.T.).—" A paratype of the opposite sex to the holotype." —"The Entomological Code." Washington, May, 1912, § 70.

Neallotype (N.At.).—A specimen described subsequently as the type of the other sex.This word was suggested by Mr. J. Hartley Durrant to illustrate our definition. Paratype (P.T.).—This term should be accompanied by the sex of the specimen, as P.T. male , meaning a specimen of the original male series, or P.T. female , for a specimen of the original female series. A paratype may be a specimen of a series represented by a holotype, an allotype, or by a neallotype.

Besides giving the specimen its proper type label, a method of numbering has been adopted by Mr. Durrant. He gives each specimen a fractional number, the numerator being the number of the individual in the series, the denominator the number of specimens in the series. Thus 2/18 denotes the second specimen in a series of 18.As the original description should indicate the number of specimens, we see no use in noting each one unless they call for special notice. We propose to apply this method where the original series shows any variation, the number 1 indicating the holotype or the allotype, and succeeding numbers indicating divergence. If there are ten variable specimens, they should be arranged in order of divergence from the type, and they will bear numbers 2/10, 3/10, etc. If all the specimens exactly agree they will be numbered 1/10. Any specimen can be indicated in the original description by its fractional number.

6.—STUDIES ON THE GENITAL ARMATURE. Mr. Joicey has equipped a small laboratory in connection with the Museum for the purpose of carrying out work on the genitalia. This is in charge of Mr G. L. Birbel, and all dissections and drawings are by him unless otherwise stated. The morphological differences are also worked out by Mr. Birbel. A process has been developed whereby dissections can be made without the abdomen sustaining any obvious mutilation. A full account of the technique will be given in a future number of the journal.It is not possible to carry out dissections of all described forms, as time would not permit, but the new technique enables us to dissect specimens which may otherwise not become available. The nomenclature employed in describing the organs is the one given by Dr. J. McDunnough, the Canadian Entomologist, vol. xliii,June, 1911.The terms anterior, posterior, dorsal, and ventral, are used in relation to the whole of the organs, e.g., where the valve is connected with the sternite, this is the anterior end.

7.—THE INCORPORATION OF NEW MATERIAL. If a collection of insects is built up for scientific study, some care must be taken in the acquisition of material. We endeavour to keep as near as possible to the following plan in making accessions : — (1) Forms not represented in the collection. (2) Material from a zoological area which is as yet unrepresented in the collection. (3) Type specimens of any kind. (4) Material provided with proper data, and serving to replace specimens not so provided. (5) Forms already in the collection but which are subject to variability. (6) Forms already in the collection but which may be replaced by better specimens from the same localities.

8.—THE ACQUISITION OF DATA. Before Entomology became the scientific study which it is now, most specimens in collections were accompanied by no indication of their habitat, and if any such label was affixed, it bore the legend "India," "America," "Amazon," "Peru," "Bogota," etc. These were often erroneous, besides being ambiguous. Students of Entomology very soon found that the more exact the information they obtained as to the habitat, the more accurate would be their studies in classification and distribution. With the formulation of new biological problems, especially the baffling phenomena of mimicry, the need arose for data of another kind to be added. We point out to our collectors the importance of furnishing adequate data with their specimens, and in 1919 I drew up a scheduleof requirements in this respect. This has been sent to our principal collectors, and whilst it may not be complete, it covers the most important points on which information should be sought. We print this schedule below, and would welcome any suggestions in regard to it. 1. Locality. (a) If name is not on map give approximate position in relation to a place which is on the map. (b) Write a short account of geographical features. This will include the general configuration, the presence of water, and distance from the sea in case of islands. (c) Nature of the Flora, noting special types. (d) Vertebrate Fauna ; abundance or not of birds, reptiles, and mammals. (e) If a mountain, indicate which side. (f) If a river, indicate which bank. (g) Height above sea-level. 2. Climate. (a) General remarks. (b) Rainfall and humidity. (c) Temperatures taken at coolest period, medium period, and hottest time of the day. (d) Kind of season : wet, dry, or both. (e) Prevailing winds. 3. Time. (a) Day and month when taken. (b) Taken in a.m., p.m., or at dusk, or attracted to light at night. 4. Habits of Adults. (a) Usual feeding haunts. (b) What species fly together ? (c) When several forms are feeding or at rest in one assemblage,try to take all by waiting for those that are disturbed to come back. Keep such lots separate. (d) Note any protection afforded by coloration, etc., when at rest. (e) Note whether conspicuous on the wing, and if can be mistaken for another species. (f) Note any bird or animal seen catching butterflies, and what species of butterfly. (g) When skinning any birds, note if any remains of Lepidoptera are in the crop. Contents of crops may be sent for examination at home, if not possible in the field. (h) Resting attitude. (i) Do the sexes fly together, and have they similar habits ? Do the males " assemble " to the females ? 5. Habits op Larvae. (a) Endeavour to rear larvae. (See separate instructions.) (b) When adult is known, preserve the larva, both by fixation and by formalin. (See separate instructions.) (c) Note coloration when alive. (d) Note time when feeding. (e) Note if conspicuous or protected. (f) Preserve portion of food-plant, and include flower where possible. (g) Note month, (h) Any habits. (i) Any enemies observed. (j) Fix any larvae with curious structures. (k) Resting-attitude. 6. Pupae. Preserve all pupa-cases where the adult is known. Kill live pupae which are nearly ready to emerge, but only of known species. 7. Ova. Where identified preserve some in 5 per cent, formalin. Label with date. 8. Preserving Larvae. (a) Fixation for microscopical examination. Take specimens which have just moulted, or which are not going to moult soon. Drop them in fixative. After a few hours large specimens (exceeding 2 inches in length), are cut into two or three pieces with a sharp razor at junction of segments. All are transferred to fresh fixative for twenty-four hours. Transfer to fresh 90 per cent, alcohol for three days. Put up in fresh 90 per cent, alcohol in tubes, label, seal tube. (b) Preservation as Specimens. Kill by drowning and put up in 5 per cent, formalin. Use no alcohol, as it takes out colour. (c) Keep species and different stages separate. (d) Fix larvae whose adults are known, and also any others which present curious structures. (e) Put all specimens where adults are known in formalin, and duplicates if available of any others which have been fixed. 9. Preserving Adults. (a) Drop into fixative and after a few hours remove abdomen, wings, thorax, and head, and place all in fresh fixative. After twenty-four hours transfer all to 90 per cent, alcohol.After twenty-four hours transfer to fresh 90 per cent, alcohol. After three days put in fresh 90 per cent, alcohol in stoppered bottles. (b) Keep species separate ; but several specimens of a species can be put in same bottle. Keep some specimens entire. (c) Fix specially any which are observed to have emerged from pupa, both immediately after emergence and also when wings are dry. These facts must be noted on a label. (d) Fix butterflies of all groups and any strange moths. (e) Gravid females of common specimens may be fixed. 10. Rearing Larvae. Prepare several cages and keep clear of ants. Larvae of one kind, or ova, are placed in one cage which is called, say, 1. Note when any are going to moult, and as soon as they have done so, remove these to another cage which is called 1.1. As these moult, remove to another cage and call this 1.2; and so on to the pupae, these being removed to a cage for hatching. As the larvae in the first cage change they are passed through the other cages. As successive changes are made specimens should be removed for fixation and preserving, and a brief description of the coloration in the last instar should be made. The cage numbers used for the first series bred will be 1,l'l, 1"2, etc., the decimal showing which stages have been passed through. The next series bred will be 2, 2.1, 2.2, etc. These numbers must be put on the labels accompanying preserved specimens.Always note when hatched from the egg.

11. Beeeding. It is very desirable to obtain the male and female for eggs and larvae, so that one can be sure they have not paired with any other form. The parents must be included in the batch of specimens bred, other specimens being kept, no matter in what condition they may be, and the dates of emergence should be noted. A pair should be used to keep eggs for future generation, and as many generations should be bred as convenient, but at least three or four. Each generation should be kept separate. 12. Records. Each package of specimens for transit home must bear a number corresponding to one in a book. This book shall have numbered pages with a tear-off original and carbon copy.The page number will be the number of the collection. On it will be written contents of package, where collected, number of specimens and any notes desirable. The tear-off page will be sent in covering letter. All letters will be written in similar carbon duplicate book with page numbers. Labels can be written with waterproof Indian ink.Carry a good scale map and chart the collecting grounds ; also route taken.

This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1924. It may be copyrighted outside the U.S. (see Help:Public domain).