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Letter from Batchian (S47: 1859)

Editor Charles H. Smith's Note: Excerpt from a letter concerning collecting activities dated 29 October 1858, Batchian, Moluccas. Communicated to the Entomological Society of London meeting of 7 March 1859 and printed on page 61 of their Proceedings for 1858-1859. To link directly to this page, connect with: http://people.wku.edu/charles.smith/wallace/S047.htm

     Mr. Stevens read the following extract from a letter just received, addressed to him by Mr. A. R. Wallace, dated Batchian, Moluccas, October 29th, 1858:--

     "As there is now a boat going which may just catch the mail at Ternate, I write a few lines to let you know of my having arrived here safe and commenced operations. I came here in a small hired boat with my own men, luckily it was fine weather, or 100 miles at sea with no means of cooking and only room for one day's water, would have been more than unpleasant. I stopped five days at the Kaiod Islands, just half way, and got a nice collection of beetles, a fair number of new species, and some curious varieties of those before found at Ternate and Gilolo. I have only been here five days, but from what I have already done, and the nature of the country, I am inclined to think it may prove one of the best localities I have yet visited; I have already twenty species of Longicorns new to me, nothing very grand, but many pretty and very interesting; the most remarkable is one of the Bornean genus, Triammatus, also several species of the elegant little genus Serixia, which have been very scarce or absent since I left Sarawak; I have also an elegant new Pachyrhynchus, a fine Ips, a small new Cicindela, and a small new species of Therates. In butterflies I have taken an imperfect specimen of a glorious new species very like Papilio Ulysses, but distinct, and ever handsomer! I have also seen a female of a grand new Ornithoptera, but cannot say what the male will prove to be. I have several times seen what I think is a new species allied to Papilio Codrus, but they are too wild to catch: the Papilio allied to P. Sarpedon, which I found at Macassar, is also here, and two or three other species which I have not yet been able to capture."

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