Elachistine moths are the World’s most species-rich group of Lepidoptera that specialise on monocotyledon plants, especially grasses and sedges. This volume is the first reference to describe the so-far unknown diversity of these leaf-mining moths in Australia.
It provides a new generic classification for the group on a worldwide basis, and describes in detail the genera and species that occur in Australia. Keys to genera and species, as well as generic, subgeneric and species group descriptions are given, richly supplied with illustrations of larvae, pupae and adult moths. In addition, the external appearance and the male and female genitalia of all species are described.
The volume contains redescriptions of all 11 previously named valid species, and descriptions of no less than 137 species new to science, of which 128 are formally named, increasing the known species richness of Australian Elachistinae by more than an order of magnitude.
The diverse Australian Elachisine fauna is nearly entirely endemic, and concentrates on the more humid coastal and montane regions. Given the wealth of biological information, the book provides a basis for conservation consideration of Elachistinae, many of which are dependent on diminishing fragments of suitable habitat.
Phylogeny-based organisation of elachistine taxonomy, with worldwide implications.
Describes the Australian diversity of Elachistinae, allowing identification of Australian specimens of this subfamily for the first time.
Provides an understanding of elachistine evolution in a worldwide context.
Material and methods
1. Phylogeny, subfamily definition and generic classification
4. Diversity, distribution and conservation biology
5. Australian species of Elachistinae
6. Australian species excluded from the Elachistinae
Appendix 1: Taxonomic changes published in this volume
Appendix 2: Data matrix
"This book, like its predecessors in the same series, is extremely well produced. This does not only pertain to its scientific value and content, but also to the quality of printing... and binding."
Konrad Fiedler, The Journal of Research on the Lepidoptera, Vol. 44: 49-50
"I enjoyed reading this book for the sense of how much we still have to learn about the nature of Australia, and particularly the ecological interactions that are so critical to the survival of many species."
Russell Barrett, Australasian Systematic Botany Society Newsletter 147–8 (June–September 2011), pp. 24-26
Lauri Kaila is Senior Curator at the Finnish Museum of Natural History in the University of Helsinki, specialising in Lepidoptera. His research focus is systematics of Lepidoptera, from species taxonomy to classification of the order of Lepidoptera as a whole. His main interest is in the superfamily Gelechioidea, and he is the leading World authority of the Elachistinae.