Brown meets Broun: Inspecting the type specimens of broad-nosed weevils at the Natural History Museum, London

Samuel Brown *1

1 Bio-Protection Research Centre, Lincoln University

Eligible for student prize

The broad-nosed weevil genus Irenimus is one of the larger genera of weevils in New Zealand. The genus is found throughout the country, though they find their greatest diversity in the southern half of the South Island. They are found in forest-edge, shrubland and grassland habitats, with an altitudinal range that spans over 2000 m. A total of 65 species were described by Broun and Sharp between the years 1880--1920; however, it is very difficult to identify species based on these descriptions alone. As part of a taxonomic revision of the genus, it was necessary that the type specimens held in the Natural History Museum, London be inspected in order to confirm the identity of previously described species and to validate previous determinations. This was done in August and September 2013. Of the available names relevant to my study, 28 are valid species and 37 are synonyms. During my time in Europe, I was also able to visit the Muséum national d'Historie naturelle, where I was able to look at a substantial amount of Broun material deposited there. This collection contains a number of syntypes; but has been largely neglected by New Zealand coleopterists.

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