Chrysomelidae – The Leaf Beetles of Nepal CHRYSOMELIDAE
The Himalayas – particularly Nepal – are a most significant area for entomology. Our research expeditions and those of other museums have provided ample material for further work. Faunistic and taxonomic studies are broadening our knowledge of the Himalayan leaf beetles. Amongst them there are several new species still to be discovered by science.
Nepal is the most mountainous and an extremely narrow country. From north to south, it is only 250 kilometres long. This short distance is marked by extreme differences of height, which can exceed 8,500 metres. Arctic temperatures prevail in certain areas, sub-tropical climates in others. Low humidity can be offset with extremely high percentages of humidity.
The richness of landscapes is reflected in the extraordinary diversity of leaf beetles, with some more prevalent species found in agricultural areas and lowlands. Rare species may be found in the mountain forests, by net, light trap, spoon net or beating sheet.
Several specialised beetles live at heights between 3,000 and 4,000 metres above sea level. Small and often flightless, they are endemic, i.e., they only occur in that specific area. These species are mostly to be found under stones, and generally belong to the Alticinae subfamily.