Pensoft, May 2008. 297 pages, paperback, colour photos, illustrations, maps
Samways, Michael J.
ONE COPY ONLY THEN OUT OF PRINT. Pensoft Series Faunistica, No. 70. Dragonflies are a beautiful, important and conspicuous component of freshwater, whether still or flowing. They are also important indicators of freshwater quality and condition, which is significant for current and future conservation initiatives in South Africa. The country’s dragonflies are particularly interesting as many are special or endemic to the area, making it a part of the world of great conservation significance. Sadly however, many of these endemic species are highly threatened, especially by invasive alien trees which shade out their habitat. This book is about this exciting dragonfly fauna. Besides aiming at increasing awareness of these lovely and sensitive insects, it enables their identification, using several approaches, from simple flick-through to the use of comprehensive identification keys. Each species is also given a Dragonfly Biotic Index, covering a spectrum from the most common, widespread and tolerant species through to the most threatened, rare and sensitive ones. Michael Samways is Professor and Chair of the Department of Conservation Ecology and Entomology, Stellenbosch University., He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of South Africa and a Fellow of the University of KwaZulu-Natal. He has published 260 scientific papers and written several books on insect biology and conservation, the most recent of which is Insect Diversity Conservation, Cambridge University Press. He has won several awards, and in the last two years, these include the Stellenbosch University Rector’s Award for Research Excellence, the John Herschel Medal from the Royal Society of South Africa, and the Senior Captain Scott Medal from the South African Academy for Science and Art. Michael is on several international editorial boards and involved with various international committees devoted to invertebrate conservation. Indeed, his research team is dedicated to the conservation of invertebrates and other biodiversity, which so enrich our planet.