DESCRIPTOR: Embrik Strand
Embrik Strand (1876 Ål – 1947 Riga) was an arachnologist who classified many insect and spider species, including the greenbottle blue tarantula.
He studied at the University of Kristiania (now University of Oslo). Around 1900 he focused on collecting insect specimens from Norway. These are now deposited at the university's museum, where he worked as a curator from 1901 to 1903.
After studying at the University of Oslo Strand traveled in Norway from 1898 to 1903 collecting a great number of insects. For part of this time (1901-1903) he was a conservator in the museum of zoology of the university. He then left for Germany where he continued his studies of zoology at the University of Marburg (1903), then he worked with Staatliches Museum für Naturkunde Stuttgart (1905) and, later, that of Tübingen and then with Senckenberg Museum in Frankfurt. From 1907, he worked with Museum für Naturkunde der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. In 1923, he accepted the post of professor of zoology at the University of Riga and where he directed the Institute of zoology and hydrobiology.
Strand was the author of many publications, mainly on insects and spiders and was the descriptor of several hundred new species. He edited, 1910 to 1929, the review Archiv für Naturgeschichte and was the founder, in 1928, of Folia zoologica and hydrobiologica. Pierre Bonnet (naturalist) indicates, in his Bibliographia araneorum (pages 150-153), that a record number of new taxa were dedicated to Strand. Strand himself was the editor of a book in three volumes listing these, to celebrate his jubilee. There are indeed several hundreds of species which bear his name in all the possible forms: Strandi, Strandella, Embriki, Embrikiellus, Embrik-Strandella, etc. In the same way, Bonnet reproached Strand renaming already described species, but of which he, Strand, considered the name incorrect: Strand draws up a list of these, in 1926, where he renames nearly 1, 700 taxa of spiders.
He was a prolific author, the list of his publications which he published in 1918 (after only twenty years of activity) is 1, 200 titles.
Strand's collection of insects and spiders from Norway is in the Zoological Museum of the University of Oslo . His types are in the German Entomological Institute and the Museum für Naturkunde.
24. März, 2008 / TM