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The Lepidoptera fauna of southwestern Africa – the land between southern Angola and Cape Town – is dominated by groups adapted to arid and semiarid conditions. Many genera and species are found nowhere else in Africa, and this high endemism mirrors the unique vegetation of the occurring Desert, Nama Karoo, Succulent Karoo, Fynbos and dry Savanna biomes. Based on intensive field work over several years Esperiana Memoir, Volume 6: Basic Pattern of Lepidoptera Diversity in Southwestern Africa provides an introduction to the Lepidoptera fauna in this part of Africa, encompassing all families. After a method chapter including a list of visited localities a short description of environmental conditions in the study area is presented. Light trap samples from 36 localities were analysed which form the basis for discussing general features of the fauna, e.g. diversity, taxonomic composition, distribution, seasonality, endemism, biogeography, etc. In a taxonomic chapter a total of 118 new species are described, almost all of them are locally abundant. Thirteen new genera are established in the families Psychidae, Plutellidae, Gelechiidae, Pyralidae, Crambidae and Noctuidae. Morphological characters (e.g. genitalia, wing venation, head architecture) are illustrated including photos of the adult moths presented on 15 colour plates.
1. Introduction 10
2. Material and Methods 14
3. Study area 22
4. Lepidoptera diversity of light trap samples 29
5. Butterflies 125
6. Basic pattern of Lepidoptera diversity in southwestern Africa 133
7. New and little known species of Lepidoptera of southwestern Africa 146
8. References 261
Index of taxonomic names of Lepidoptera 310
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