Rob robblakemore at
Thu Feb 15 22:00:40 EST 2001

Hi all, 

In response to many enquiries about the scope and content of the CD-
ROM on TASMANIAN EARTHWORMS, the culmination of five years work 
published in December, 2000. The monograph comprises a comprehensive 
introduction to biology/morphology/reproduction, a revision of the 
megadrile families of the World, and descriptions of all known Tasmanian 
species. This 800 page monograph with 222 figures would be of value to 
ecologists, taxonomists, teachers, and students involved in this field of 
study, particularly those in Australasia but also workers from other regions 
of the Globe. Of a current Australian total of approximately 600 earthworms, 
Tasmania with about 1% of the landmass has nearly 40% of the described 

Summary of Contents 

The monograph describes 228 species in 38 genera belonging to four 
families of earthworms known from Tasmania. This biodiversity compares 
with total of approximately 48 species from Britain and Ireland, 74 from 
Japan, 160 from North America, 174 from Myanmar, 180 from France, 192 
from New Zealand, 350 from the Indian subcontinent, and ca. 350 from 
mainland Australia.  

Determinations are made of the earliest reported species from Tasmania 
viz. Megascolides orthostichon (Schmarda, 1861) - this the first earthworm 
described from Australasia, of the 'giant' Vesiculodrilus tasmanianus 
(Fletcher, 1887), the first Australian report of Lumbricus terrestris 
Linnaeus, 1758, a new littoral species of Pontodrilus Perrier, 1874 with an 
argument for Australian endemicity of this genus, as well as the first known 
loss of a native species from the World fauna due to the extinction of 
Hypolimnus pedderensis - the Lake Pedder Earthworm.  

All 18 megadrile Oligochaeta families of the World are reviewed and 
revised in order to place Tasmanian, and Australasian, genera in the 
context of the extraneous fauna. The long anticipated 'missing-link' of 
Octochaetidae in Australia is newly determined, eg. Octochaetus 
ambrosensis (Blakemore, 1997). No endemic Acanthodrilidae nor 
Octochaetidae occur in Tasmania as are found on both the North and 
South Islands of New Zealand and in northern Australia.  

Table of Contents: 

1. Author's Preface

2. Introduction and Background

3. Biology and Ecology

4. Morphology and Reproduction

5. Taxonomic Characters

6. Collection and Inspection

7. Conventions and Abbreviations

8. Comparisons of Previous Classifications

9. Systematics Results including descriptions and keys to families, genera, 
and species  

10. References.

Enquiries in the first instance should be made to the author: 

Rob Blakemore PhD, PO BOX 414 Kippax, Canberra ACT 2615 Australia.

Tel: + 61 2 6278 5610

Email: robblakemore at

"Beauty is truth, truth beauty,"-that is all Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.

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