Language: Bilingual in English and Japanese
From the preface:
"Study of Asian butterflies was begun in the 19th century by Westerners, who produced many important works. Such works, of course, contained findings on their life histories. Some of them were indeed remarkable records, but not for many species. In most cases, the descriptions were scanty, and the figures and photos were not detailed. Many of the identified larval foodplants were in need of re-examination. Taking the circumstances at the time into consideration, however, they were admirable works, although information on the life histories of Asian butterfly fauna was far from being satisfactory.
Except for the unfortunate interruption and delay of study during the World War II, information steadily increased. In the post-war period, first Dr. T. Shirôzu (1960) compiled a monumental review on Taiwanese butterflies, and many Japanese butterfly researchers, most of whom were non-professionals, made great contributions to the study of Asian butterflies, in particular on their taxonomy, distributions, and variations based on adult specimens (for example, Mr. E. Tsukada and others' series of Butterflies of the South East Asian Islands). At the same time, some Westerners published new reviews of butterflies in such regions as the Malay Peninsula, Hong Kong, and New Guinea. Also contributions made by many butterfly researchers and devotees in various regions and nations in Asia cannot be ignored.
However, information on early stages was very scanty in regions other than Japan, Taiwan, and Hong Kong; and Igarashi, in his Swallowtail Butterflies of the World (1979), could publish only part of his knowledge of Asian butterflies. In the absence of such information, the first volume of this series, describing life histories of 302 species in 119 genera in 8 families, was published in January 1997.
Three years have passed since then, and in the meantime the authors have compiled this second volume, which contains 380 species, to complete the series. Although the number of species covered in this series is far from being satisfactory for the entire butterfly fauna in Asia, the coverage at the generic level is considerable; therefore, together with the knowledge reported for Japanese butterflies (only a few species of which are described in this series), the two volumes will provide a general view of the life histories of Asian butterflies. Due to the limitation of space, the authors had to exclude many species for which all stages of life histories have been elucidated. Also amongst such species on which only fragmentary information was obtained, only peculiar notable ones were included. Of course, commentaries were added in descriptions of closely related species of some of those excluded. For the species undescribed, the authors will seek other opportunities of publication in the future."
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