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MAR 10 828
MY YOUNGEST SON
JOHN HENRY THOMSON
WHO GAVE HIS LIFE IN THE SERVICE
HIS BODY WAS LAID NEAR DOULLENS
HIS SOUL IS WITH HIS GOD
HISTORICAL account of the introduced animals and plants of New Zealand has long been a felt want in this country. Changes had been going on for the last century and a half, but records and references to these changes were much scattered, and it was very difficult for many persons interested in the natural history of the country to acquire any exact knowledge of the subject. This has been one of the reasons which induced me to accumulate the facts recorded here. The work has led me into a very large correspondence, but I have been gratified by the interest manifested by those appealed to, and by their readiness to assist me. The whole question of naturalisation appeals to most intelligent persons, and my efforts to elicit information have been most pleasantly received, and readily seconded on all sides.
To secure accuracy as far as possible, especially in connection with those groups of animals and plants with which my acquaintance was very imperfect, I sought and most ungrudgingly received the cooperation of local specialists, and I desire here to acknowledge my deep debt of gratitude to these gentlemen, who have checked my lists and supplied me with many of the facts recorded. They include the late Major Broun of Auckland who went over the Coleoptera; Messrs G. V. Hudson of Wellington, A. Philpott of Invercargill, G. Howes of Dunedin, and D. Miller, Government Entomologist, who dealt with Insecta generally, and the last-named especially with the Diptera; Mr G. Brittin, late of Christchurch, the Coccidæ ; Dr Reakes, Director of Agriculture, the Trematode, Cestode and Nematode parasites of our imported animals; and Professor Benham, F.R.S., of Otago University, the Oligochates. These gentlemen have also given me much valuable general information.
Invaluable assistance has been afforded me in regard both to introduced animals and plants by Mr T. F. Cheeseman of Auckland; by Mr W. W. Smith of New Plymouth, whose experience as a field naturalist is second to none in the Dominion; by Mr B. C. Aston, chemist of the Agricultural Department, who also is a most observant naturalist; by Dr F. Hilgendorf, of Lincoln Agricultural College; by Dr C. Chilton, Rector of Canterbury College, Christchurch; and by Mr A. Cockayne, Biologist of the Agricultural Department. My old Otago friends and fellow-workers, Dr D. Petrie, now of Auckland,
and Dr L. Cockayne, F.R.S., now of Wellington, have contributed much valuable information in regard to plant life. Mr F. L. Ayson, Chief Inspector of Fisheries, has assisted me very materially in bringing the knowledge of introduced fishes up to date.
In addition to all these I take this opportunity of expressing my indebtedness for facts and suggestions to Messrs Edgar F. Stead, Elsdon Best, Chas. Hedley (of the Australian Museum, Sydney), James Drummond, T. W. Kirk, the late Henry Suter, my sons Dr W. M. Thomson, Dr J. Allan Thomson and Mr G. Stuart Thomson, and to a large number of valued correspondents whose names are recorded in the following pages.
This work has given me a great amount of pleasure in the preparation, and I trust it will prove both interesting and useful to its readers.