New species named after former Naturalis general director

December 29th, 2022
Anamalysia vanhengstumi

Naturalis researcher Kees van Achterberg named a new species of parasitoid wasp after Ronald van Hengstum. He was the former general director of Naturalis, and died suddenly in 2007. 

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New genus
of wasps

In the biology journal Zookeys our hymenoptera expert Kees van Achterberg, together with researchers from the US and Asia, describes a new genus of wasps: Anamalysia. The new group has six species in it, that occur in Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam and India. They are named after the Anamala mountains in India's state of Kerala. 

Naturalis is particularly pleased with the description of Anamalysia vanhengstumi (shown above). The species is named after our former director general Ronald van Hengstum, who perished suddenly in 2007. We was the director that made sure Naturalis could build a new museum, but he was also very involved with the research part of Naturalis Biodiversity Center. On the picture below, he is shown traveling through the jungle of Vietnam, together with Van Achterberg (the man with the beard). They saved money on 4x4 rental by placing their insect traps by bike. 

Van Hengstum is still thought of warmly by many at Naturalis who worked with him, and we are happy to be able to honor him this way.    Ronald van Hengstum op de fiets in Vietnam