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This is the first systematical guide in monographic format to the lepidopteran insects of this important and exciting group of islands in the Indian Ocean. There are 552 species recorded, making the lepidoptera the third largest order of terrestrial animals (after beetles and flies). Of these 552 species, 546 are resident, and 275 (50%) are endemic taxa.
A conservation status assessment is also given for each native resident species, using the IUCN Red List Criteria (IUCN 2001) and following the assessment in Gerlach et al, 2005.
All species are illustrated, with typical forms, major or distinctive varieties and sexually dimorphic forms where appropriate; for a small number of species, also the larvae are illustrated on 2 plates.