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Tuatara: Volume 23, Issue 2, July 1978

Book Reviews An Illustrated Guide to Common Soil Animals

Book Reviews An Illustrated Guide to Common Soil Animals

This booklet is designed to help non-specialists identify the various types of soil animals. It successfully fulfils this aim and should be of great value for school and university classes when sorting animal material extracted from litter and soil, or for biologists engaged in environmental studies or perhaps vertebrate feeding studies where the need is to broadly classify litter invertebrates without going into too much detail.

It is presented in tabular form with each type of animal clearly illustrated with line drawings that highlight their diagnostic features. Virtually all the examples are from the New Zealand fauna. The table lists the scientific and common name, with references to appropriate taxonomic literature; the soil conditions required and their food; their effects on the soil, their size and other snippets of geenral information. Thus, a surprising amount of data are presented in the compact space of 32 pages. References are given to 43 taxonomic publications and 28 general books and papers on the oil fauna.