[Annelida] Jacob van der Land

Geoff Read via annelida%40net.bio.net (by g.read from niwa.co.nz)
Thu Oct 27 16:22:39 EST 2011

Dear all,

Sad news forwarded from the editors list for World Register of Marine
Species (WoRMS).
Jacob van der Land pursued many marine biology interests, which
included various worm phyla, notably Priapulida, and as many will recall
was an active contributor to Annelida list from the early days up to
about 2002. Among his publications he wrote a pioneering monograph on
Lamellibrachia back in 1977 with Nørrevang, then perceptively treating
putative phylum Vestimentifera as Annelida.


>>> On 27/10/2011 at 6:45 a.m., "Hoeksema, B.W."
<Bert.Hoeksema from ncbnaturalis.nl> wrote:

Dr. Jacob van der Land passed away on Sunday 23 October 2011, 76 years
old. He spent many of his productive years - before and after his
retirement - on the Unesco Register of Marine Species, the European
Register of Marine Species, and indirectly also on WoRMS.

He was curator of Worms (Vermes) and head of the dept. of Invertebrates
of the former Rijksmuseum van Natuurlijke Historie (RMNH), later
National Museum of Natural History, which presently is known as the
Netherlands Centre for Biodiversity Naturalis at Leiden, The

His research was mainly dedicated to the Priapulida. His latest
contribution to this taxon consisted of: van der Land, J. (2009).
Priapulida. In: Gordon, D. (Ed.) (2009). New Zealand Inventory of
Biodiversity. Volume One: Kingdom Animalia. 584 pp. His name is
mentioned many times in WoRMS, e.g.: van der Land, J.; Neuhaus, B.
(2011). Priapulus. Accessed through: World Register of Marine Species at
http://www.marinespecies.org/aphia.php?p=taxdetails&id=101095 on

Jaap, as he was less formally named, succeeded the late Prof. Wim
Vervoort as organizer of large expeditions to the East and West
Atlantic, the west Indian Ocean, and Indonesia. Thanks to his effort and
dedication, the museum in Leiden has large collections of marine
animals. The last scientific publication to which he contributed is:
Hoeksema, B.W., Land, J. van der, Meij, S.E.T. van der, Ofwegen, L.P.,
Reijnen, B.T., Soest, R.W.M. van & Voogd, N.J. de (2011). Unforeseen
importance of historical collections as baselines to determine biotic
change of coral reefs: the Saba Bank case. Marine Ecology 32: 135-141.

In 2001, a special volume of Zoologische Verhandelingen was dedicated
to his retirement, which was edited by the late Koos den Hartog: Hartog,
J.C. den (2001). Special volume on the occasion of the retirement in
2000 of Dr Jacob van der Land. Zoologische Verhandelingen 334: 1-194. In
this volume several new species were named after him, such as in: Goud,
J. & Hoeksema, B.W. (2001). Pedicularia vanderlandi spec. nov.
(Gastropoda: Ovulidae), a symbiotic snail on the hydrocoral Distichopora
vervoorti Cairns & Hoeksema, 1998 (Hydrozoa: Stylasteridae) from Bali,
Indonesia. Zoologische Verhandelingen, Leiden 334: 77-97.

Underneath is an abstract of the publication:  Bruggen, A.C. van (2001)
Dr Jacob van der Land, marine biologist extraordinary. Zoologische
Verhandelingen, Leiden 334: 7-20. For the full text (pdf) see:

This contribution is an attempt to sketch the life and works of Dr
Jacob van der Land, curator of worms and chief marine biologist of the
National Museum of Natural History, on the occasion of his official
retirement. Born in 1935, Jacob van der Land read biology at Leiden
University (1958-1964), where he obtained his Ph.D. in 1970 on a
treatise on the Priapulida under the supervision of Prof. Dr L.D.
Brongersma. In 1964 he was appointed curator of worms in the museum.
Later on he took over leadership of the invertebrate section (excluding
insects) of the museum and was also placed in charge of all marine
research. Initially, Van der Land organized field trips for biology
students of Leiden University to Scandinavia, who were able to sample
seagoing studies from a research vessel. From the early seventies on he
conducted a number of smaller and larger marine expeditions mainly in
the tropics (particularly in SE. Asia). His talent for organisation,
management and leadership in the field was outstanding and led to the
complete success of these undertakings. In an interim period in the
museum’s history he also participated in the general management.
Subsequently his talents were severely tested when in 1996-1998 he was
asked to supervise the almost traumatic move of the museum from the old
premises in the Raamsteeg to the purpose- built new complex in the
Darwinweg elsewhere in Leiden. Apart from having made a significant
impact on the study of various groups of worms and worm-like animals
(Turbellaria, Priapulida, Oligochaeta, Tardigrada, Vestimentifera), Van
der Land also greatly influenced marine research in the Netherlands by
participating in scientific management on a national scale. A list of
his publications until early 2000 is attached.

Best regards,

Bert Hoeksema

Dr. Bert W. Hoeksema
Head, Department of Marine Zoology

t   +31 71 568 76 31 
f   +31 71 568 76 66 
m +31 6 444 123 55
e   bert.hoeksema from ncbnaturalis.nl 

url  http://science.naturalis.nl/hoeksema 

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