Written by the acknowledged expert, this first book on the subject that identifies and describes both native and exotic species. Including notes on identification and collection of ants, it is illustrated throughout with diagrams and photographs, in colour and black and white.
The book is the outcome of a lifetime's research by the author. He reveals that there are 37 established species of ants in New Zealand, 11 of which are considered to be endemic. This leaves 26 that are exotic or introduced, 2 of which are recent arrivals. Three of 4 additional recent arrivals pose serious threats to New Zealand's invertebrate fauna and economy if they ever become established.New Zealand's endemic ant fauna comprises a mixture of 'primitive' and 'advanced' species.
Like spiders, ants can tell us something about New Zealand's Gondwanan past. Questions about the identification of ants are frequently fielded by museums. The illustrations and photographs in this volume will greatly assist this task. For would-be students of ants, there is also a useful chapter on collecting and studying the fauna.
Introducing the World of Ants; Illustrated Key to the Ants of New Zealand; Ant Species; Collecting, Preserving, Culturing & Studying Ants; Four Myrmecologists of the Past.
Warwick Don is an honorary curator in entomology, Otago Museum, having retired from the Department of Zoology, University of Otago.