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A collaboration atween Wikispecies an ZooKeys haes bin announced. PhytoKeys joined the collaboration an aw in Novembra 2010. Eemages o species fae ZooKeys an PhytoKeys will be uplaided tae Wikimedia Commons an uised in Wikispecies.



Distinguished author

Doctor Francesco Redi.jpg

Francesco Redi
1626–1697. Standard IPNI form: Redi

Francesco Redi was an Italian entomologist, parasitologist and toxicologist, sometimes referred to as the "founder of experimental biology" and the "father of modern parasitology". Having a doctoral degree and in both medicine and philosophy from the University of Pisa at the age of 21, he worked in various cities of Italy.

Redi is best known for his series of experiments, published in 1668 as Esperienze Intorno alla Generazione degli Insetti ("Experiments on the Generation of Insects"), which is regarded as his masterpiece and a milestone in the history of modern science. The book is one of the first steps in refuting "spontaneous generation", a theory also known as "Aristotelian abiogenesis". At the time, prevailing theory was that maggots arose spontaneously from rotting meat, which Redi was able to disprove. In an experiment, He used samples of rotting meat that were either fully exposed to the air, partially exposed to the air, or not exposed to air at all. Redi showed that both fully and partially exposed rotting meat developed fly maggots, whereas rotting meat that was not exposed to air did not develop maggots. This discovery completely changed the way people viewed the decomposition of organisms and prompted further investigations into insect life cycles and into entomology in general. It is also an early example of forensic entomology.

In Esperienze Intorno alla Generazione degli Insetti Redi was the first to describe ectoparasites, such as lice (Phthiraptera), fleas (Siphonaptera), and some mites (Acari). His next treatise in 1684, titled Osservazioni intorno agli animali viventi che si trovano negli animali viventi ("Observations on Living Animals, that are in Living Animals") recorded the descriptions and the illustrations of more than 100 parasites. In it he also differentiates the earthworm (generally regarded as a helminth) and Ascaris lumbricoides, the human roundworm. An important innovation from the book is his experiments in chemotherapy in which he employed what is now called "scientific control", the basis of experimental design in modern biological research. Perhaps, his most significant observation was that parasites produce eggs and develop from them, which contradicted the prevailing opinion that they are produced spontaneously. Altogether he is known to have described some 180 species of parasites.

See also: Distinguished authors of previous months.

Species of the month

Carpathian Blue Slug

Bielzia coerulans

Bielzia coerulans Bielz, 1851

Some facts about this shell-less terrestrial gastropod mollusc:

Size and coloration: Juveniles are yellowish brown with dark lateral bands. Adult slugs turn blue and becomes 100–140 mm in length.
Distribution: Endemic to the Carpathian Mountains in Eastern Europe, however it is not evenly distributed over the entire range and is often not present in habitats that seem to be suitable. According to the IUCN it is native to the Czech Republic (only in Moravia), Hungary, Romania, Slovakia, southern Poland and the Ukraine. The species has the potential to be invasive as demonstrated by introduced populations in Kiev and western Germany. For example it was found in 2012 in Germany (presumed introduction in Westerwald, Rhineland-Palatinate).
Protection status: IUCN: Bielzia coerulans Bielz, 1851 (Least Concern). Last assessed by German malacologist Frank Walther in June 20, 2016. There are no conservation measures in place (nor are they needed) however the species is protected in Hungary.
Etymology: Its generic name Bielzia is an eponym of the German malacologist Michael Bielz. Its specific name is the Latin word coerulans meaning "turning blue".

The Carpathian Blue Slug (Bielzia coerulans) is also known simply as Blue Slug. It is the only known species within the Bielzia genus. The species is found in both deciduous forests and coniferous forests. The slug prefers rich structured habitats, but if a minimum of shelter such as dead wood and ground vegetation is available it can also be found in pine- and spruce monocultures. The slugs mature in June to July and after copulation lay 30–80 eggs in one single clutch. After egg deposition the adults then die. Half grown juveniles hibernate during the winter, and a new generation of fully grown slugs appear in May the next year.

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