91 pages, 52 b/w distribution maps
From the preface:
"Atomariinae beetles are rather different from most groups of insects which hitherto have been mapped. They are neither conspicuous to the public, nor popular with the average collector. On the contrary, almost all species are less than two millimetres in length, and live such secretive lives that specialised collecting techniques are needed. If decaying substances are seived, some species can be rather abundant insects. Many hundreds of individuals may be found, for example, living and breeding in garden compost heaps. Adults and larvae of most species probably feed on fungal hyphae and moulds.
The small size and often slight differences between species, as well as the incomplete state of knowledge, means that the identification of Atomariinae will always be difficult. Accepting published records from even the primary scientific literature is fraught with uncertainty in such circumstances. My own approach is that of the specialist and taxonomist, where records are based upon personally studied specimens. The permanent collections of our museums, with their rich material going back to the start of last century, have provided a major source of data which enable recent captures by myself and others to be placed in historical perspective. It therefore seems appropriate to dedicate this Atlas to all collectors, living or departed, whose painstaking fieldwork has produced the specimens upon which it is based. The Atlas also breaks new ground in its inclusion of a special section on distribution records. There has long been a need for this kind of information to be generally available in our literature."
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