Sent by Alfred Russel Wallace, Neath, Glamorganshire to Henry Walter Bates [none given] on 3 May 1846.
Re. Coleoptera specimens wanted from Bates's list, specimens he has available for exchange; sending a tracing of a map showing Crymlin (Crymlyn) Burrows, geology and plants there; Neath and Swansea valleys including a small ink sketch; plans to collect in Swansea area; Dilwyn's catalogue of Swansea Coleoptera; entomological pins and microscopes.
A typical letter handwritten by author in English and signed by author.
An original MS
Pages with text: 8
Transcriber: Barton, Michael
Transcription date: February 16, 2012
Scrutiny: 20/06/2012 - Moody, Liz; 15/01/2013 - Catchpole, Caroline;
Signed off: no
May 3rd. 1846
Those in your list which I am in want of are the following
Calathus piceus. --
Agonum piceum -- The Agonums puzzle me much & I shall be glad of any specimens you have to compare with mine --
Aphodius sphacelatus -- I think I have this, but am not sure of the species --
O. coenobita -- I am not sure of this species
I find while I have so many of the larger species to date I cannot pay the necessary attention to the more difficult smaller ones such as the minute Brachyelytra & Neerophaga -- The following are what [] I have taken from my last list up to the present time --
xLeistus spinibarbis rather plentiful in woods
L. fulvibarbis! 2 will do
L. rufescens -- 1 under stone
Chloenius vestitus -- 2 banks of River Neath
√ Amara tibialis ?. on Crynilu Burrows
√ A. erythropa ? -- do --
√ Trechus fulous.
√ T. suturalis.
Tachys binotatus -- in grass.
Ocys melanocephalus? bank of
Tempestivus.!!. } on fallen tree
Hydroporus 12-pustulatus. Neath Canal
H. pygmaeus?-- -- do.
H. tristis --
H. palustris. --
*Hygrotus pictus -- --
" scitulis --
" inequalis --
Laccobius minutus. --
*Necrophorus vespillo -- in dead crow
*N. humator. -- do
[] Catops festinans
xTrichoderma pubescens. Abundant
Trichoderma nebulosum. 2 in carcasses.
xStaphylinus erythropterus -- not uncommon.
Hister cadaverinus -- will do
xCreophilus maxillosus -- plentiful i[n] dead horse.
Meligethes coeruleus -- flowers.
√xOnthophagus Deliogria -- plentiful.
" fracticornis ? --
√xTyphoeus vulgaris. -- under cow dung under thickets -- in holes not near so deep as Geotrupes stercorarius.
xHypolithus riparins -- not uncommon
Leiophleus nubilus -- on nettles fine.
Alophus 3 guttatus -- do do
Hypera [1 word illeg.]
√xHydrononius alismatis -- on aquatic plants.
√x H. pseudacori. on Iris pseudacorus abundant.
with [1 word illeg.] small specim[ens] [1 word illeg.] not yet named.
[] We have one of Mr. Dilwyn’s Catalogues of the Swansea Coleoptera at our library here -- There are a great many nice species in it -- And I have no doubt I shall get several of them this summer. Cicindela maritime & Nebria complanata I dare say I shall get in June. I have sent you a tracing of a map to shew you the situation of the Crynilin Burrows &c... The Burrows is merely a tract of nearly level sandy ground generally covered with short grass & such plants as "erodium cicutarium" "Erophila vulgaris" "arenarius" &c... The low parts subject to inundation from the sea are covered with the great sea rush "juncus mantimus" -- [] the "Salix argenta" & gorse and -- the heaps of sand blown up immediately adjacent to beach Elymus arenaria, and Euphorbia paralias and other sea shore plants -- The [1 word illeg.] next Swansea is most flat that next Neath River is broken by several pieces of rock using perhaps 200 feet partly covered with woods & the sand heaped about then forms a little range of hills -- I think I have forgot in my list Aegialia gorbosa which is very abundant attempting to crawl up the bar hills of blown sand most perseveringly -- Crynilin bog produces many rare bog plants & marsh insects but from the quantity of water it is [] very different to get into it. The Neath & Swansea valleys are formed by Rocky mountains mostly covered with oak woods on their sides and poor mountain farms on their summits & upper slopes -- The Rock is the sandstone of the coal formation -- Along the sides of the River Neath for about 3 miles up from its mouth are flat marshy lands overflowed at spring tides -- In the lower part of the valley is a deposit of dialluvial gravel on each side forming some good undulatory land -- The section of this part would be thus [a sketch of the terrain appears here] [] High up the valley the dialluvial is wanting -- On the sketch the dark colour shews[sic] the woods and plantations. The mountains[?] rise about 1000 to 1500 feet but in the upper part of vale to 2000 & at its upper extremity abt 15 miles from Neath to upwards of 2500 feet. The upper part is crossed by the mountain limestone, and a district 4-5 miles wide separating the coal basin from the O. Red sandstone is highly Romantic & beautiful -- The mountain limestone also appears to the W. of Swansea as I have shewn by cross lines -- which district I intend if possible taking a few days tour through & expect to get some novel species.
[] I got some Ent. pins some time since & use them for all of my Coleoptera except the very large ones & the small or tender ones.
I have an eye glass with 3 lenses which I use either singly or combined but in the latter state it wants distinctness & light -- How should a ¼ inch lens be mounted? as a common eye glass or as a entomological microscope? --
I have seen some mounted at the top of a little glass cylinder which you put down over the object & then adjust with a screw -- Just before receiving your last I had discovered what I thought was a cassida to be Thymalus limbatus[.] It is rather rare here.
I must now remain | Your sincerely | Alfred R. Wallace [signature]
Mr H. Bates
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