To Dr. Janis Rácenis on his 65th birthday
Odonatologica , Volume 9 - Issue 2 p. 125- 129
A short biographyof J. RACENIS(born April 10, 1915, Riga. Latvia; teaching and research career mainly at the Universidad Central de Venezuela; founder and director of several scientific institutions in Venezuela) is followed by a list of new odonate taxa he described and by his odonatological bibliography (1953-1979). All of his work is devoted to fauna and taxonomy of the Neotropical Region, and nearly everything known on the Venezuelan dragonflies goes to his credit. Ii was only in the spring of 1979 that I have met Dr. J. Rdcenis for the first lime in person. The brief period that has elapsed since our first meeting was enough to get to know him as a very hospitable and kind man, but it is in no wav sufficient to get more than a small idea of his vast scientific knowledge and experience. This short article, therefore, renders him only inadequately the honors he deserves as the veteran of Venezuelan odonatology. Since November 1979 a serious illness holds him confined to bed and restrains his activities. But, whenever / visit him in his home near Caracas, where he is living with his wife and daughter, he always helps me with dragonfly identifications and. most patiently, answers my beginner's questions. Earlier in 1979, Dr. Rdcenis invited me several limes to the Faeuldad de Agronomic of the Universidad Central de Venezuela in Maracay, where a part of his private odonate collection is housed. It consists of some 20.000 mostly neotropical specimens. This huge material includes the types of the laxa described hy him. as well as several still undescribed species.
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