Letter | Published:

Abundance of Peripatus in Jamaica

Nature volume 63, pages 440441 (07 March 1901) | Download Citation



MR. P. H. GOSSE in the “Naturalist's Sojourn in Jamaica” (p. 66) makes the first reference to the occurrence of Peripatus in Jamaica, having found in 1845 five or six specimens near Bluefields, on the south-west coast of the island. Gosse regarded them as “rather allied to the Annelida than to the Mollusca.” No further mention of the animal is made until it was rediscovered at Bath in 1892, nearly fifty years after, by a local naturalist, Mrs. Swainson. Seven Peripatus were sent to the museum of the Institute of Jamaica, and later were briefly described by Messrs. Grabham and Cockerell in NATURE (1892, p. 514), when the specific term Jamaicensis was suggested. The year following over a dozen specimens were received by Dr. Grabham, also from Bath. The locality is in a most humid part of the eastern extremity of the island. Two or three examples have since been secured from widely separated spots, but the species has hitherto been regarded as one of much rarity, and as uncertain in its distribution. Various attempts made by different collectors to secure specimens have been unsuccessful.

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  1. Institute of Jamaica, Kingston, February 12.

    • J. E. DUERDEN


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