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Red-legged grasshopper
Chorthippus binotatus

Roy Kleukers

Fer Willemse deceased

Roy Kleukers - 3 January 2010
/ Photo:

On 26th December, 2009 the Dutch orthopterist Fer Willemse has passed away, amidst his family in his hometown Eygelshoven. Fer was well known because of his large collection and his many publications, among which the catalogue and key to the Greek Orthoptera fauna and the recent world bibliography (together with Sigfrid Ingrisch).

Fer Willemse in 2002 at the Wrakelberg, where he discovered Chorthippus apricarius as a 12 year old boy, as a new species for the Netherlands. Foto Marie-Thérèse Willemse.

Fer has helped many orthopterists throughout the world, with literature, specimens, identifications and advice. Many have visited his collection and library in Eygelshoven. Fer is the centre point of a family tradition in grasshopper study, featuring Cornelius (his father), Luc (his son) and Joost (his grandson). In June 2009 Luc  was proud to accept the David Rentz Award which was bestowed on Fer as a ‘life time achievement award’ by the Orthopterist’s Society.

Luc Willemse with the David Rentz Award for his father in June 2009 in Antalya.

Fer was diagnosed with lung cancer three years ago. He was happy to have been able to finish some big projects in his remaining time. He published an update on the Greek Orthoptera fauna and a major study on the Chorthippus of Greece.

Willemse, F. 1984. Catalogue of the Orthoptera of Greece. Fauna Graeciae 1: 1-275.
Willemse, F. 1985. Supplementary notes on the Orthoptera of Greece. Fauna Graeciae 1a: 1-47.
Willemse, F. 1986. A key to the Orthoptera species of Greece. Fauna Graeciae 2: 1-288.
Ingrisch, S. & F. Willemse 2004. Bibliographia Systematica Orthopterorum Saltatoriorum. Systematic bibliography of saltatorial Orthoptera from Linnean times to the end of the 20th century (about 1750 to 2000). Pensoft, Sofia-Moscow.
Willemse, F. & L. Willemse 2008. An annotated checklist of the Orthoptera-Saltatoria from Greece, including an updated bibliography. Articulata, Beiheft 13: 1-91.
Willemse, F.M.H., O. von Helversen & B. Odé 2009. A review of Chorthippus species with angled pronotal lateral keels from Greece with special reference to transitional populations between some Peloponnesean taxa (Orthoptera, Acrididae). Zoologische Mededelingen 83: 319-507. + cd.