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Provenance of the type specimen of William Colenso’s giant weta Hemideina gigantea

John W. Early
Auckland War Memorial Museum
7 February 2017


A specimen of a giant weta in Auckland Museum’s collections (AMNZ21862) is confirmed to be the holotype of Hemideina gigantea Colenso, 1882 and its provenance is established. Its current name is Deinacrida heteracantha White, 1842 (Orthoptera: Anostostomatidae). It was collected in 1839 and is the oldest specimen of a New Zealand insect (or perhaps of any NZ land animal) in any New Zealand collection.

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