Book review - The Lepidoptera of Europe: A distributional checklist

Review by Rob Dyke

Editors: Ole Karsholt and Josef Razawski
Publishers: Apollo Books
Year of Publication: 1996
Pages: 380
Format: Hardback
ISBN: 87-88757-01-3
Price: 490DKK exclusive of postage
Other information: Also provided on compact disc (included in the price).
Available from: Apollo Books, Kirkeby Sand 19, DK-5771 Stenstrup, Denmark.

After nearly a century, to have a new checklist of European Lepidoptera is most welcome, the only book previously to list the whole of the European Lepidoptera being the Staudinger-Rebel Catalogue (1901).

Many national checklists have appeared in the meantime, Kloet and Hincks Checklist of British Insects part II being one of many. Inevitably after such a length of time there are plently if changes in classification to get used to, such as Epione paralellaria (D. & S.) reverting to E.vesperataria, a name more familiar to me from the days of "South". More problematic is the changing of both generic and specific names, as seen in Semiothisa alternartia (Hubner) which has been changed to Macaria alternata (D. & S.).

The systematic list of more than 8300 species is in the form of tables. Each species is numbered and is followed by the letter codes of each country from which it has been recorded. All changes of nomenclature are also indicated by a symbol before the species number, these numbers being listed separately and synonyms given.

The CD-ROM also provided with this publication contains all the data given in the book. In Paradox format, the database is an extremely useful addition to this Checklist, enabling fast searches.

With Europe being visited by an increasing number of Lepidopterists a standard checklist is a must. This monumental work fulfills expectations. With a limited edition of 800 copies, purchase is recommended sooner rather than later.

Originally published in the Bulletin of the Amateur Entomologists' Society.

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