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Did Castiarina insculpta (Miena Jewel Beetle) ride on the sheep's back?
journal contributionposted on 2023-05-26, 07:19 authored by Spencer, CP, Richards, K
The Miena jewel beetle, Castiarina insculpta, is a narrow range endemic, listed as being endangered under the Tasmanian Threatened Species Protection Act 1995. The species was originally described from a single female specimen collected from the Great Lake area (Carter 1934). Between then and 2010, only a further five female specimens were found, all of which were dead. Until 2013 no records existed of live animals or a male of the species. In 2013 field naturalists observed for the first time multiple Castiarina insculpta of both sexes active across several locations south and west of Great Lake, the species being found on the composite (Asteraceae) shrub Ozothamnus hookeri (Bonham et al. 2013). The present article explores likely factors contributing to the apparent population increase of Castiarina insculpta, hypothesizing that the expansion of Ozothamnus hookeri stands across the Central Plateau is the most probable explanation.
Publication titleThe Tasmanian Naturalist
PublisherThe Tasmanian Field Naturalist Club Inc.