Time for a review of the four volumes of the Insects of Japan
by Yujin. I was thinking of putting all four series into one thread but it would have been a lot of images/species in just one thread, so I will break them up as they were released. There was a publicity photo for a potential fifth set, but to my knowledge it never materialized (it may have been sidetracked during the Yujin-Takara transition). As the name suggests, all species are Japanese/Asian.
The sets vary in the number of figures in each set, and each set seems to have a taxonomic focus to some degree. Each set also has one 'secret' figure. Volume 1, reviewed here, has 12 figures (11 and 1 secret), and if I had to put a focus on it, I would say Coleoptera (beetles).
All of the figures in each series appear to be molded after actual specimens. As such, all figures are 1:1 in size (also explains the exquisite
detail in each of these!!!). All figures require some degree of assembly, and given they are molded after actual specimens, it means legs and antennae can be very thin and delicate. Care must be taken with assembly; it also helps to secure some with glue. Several figures also come on habitat-style bases, which if you follow my posts, know I am a high fan of.
On to the figures, in numerical order on the accompanying papers:
1. Japanese rhinoceros beetle, Allomyrina dichotoma
It's only fitting that the first species in the first set would be the quintessential insect figure. If I remember correctly, I have 40 figures by 18 different manufacturers, and this is one of the best![You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
2. Lucanus maculifemoratus
Another species that is no stranger in figure form, I have 20 figures by 12 manufacturers.[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
3. Sawtoothed stag beetle, Prosopocoilus inclinatus
This species, along with the first two, are among the most commonly-made Japanese species. I have 19 figures (including a couple females and a pupa) by 12 manufacturers.[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
4. Golden-ringed dragonfly, Anotogaster sieboldii
This common large Japanese dragonfly has also been made by Furuta (incl. a nymph), Hayakwa Toys, Kaiyodo, and Rement. The secret figure in Volume 3 of the current series will be the nymph of this species![You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
5. Summer skimmer, Sympetrum darwinium
Ah! A unique species (although Kabaya made a second species in the genus).[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
6. Oncotympana maculaticollis
This ornate cicada was also made by Furuta (Insect Science) as an adult and nymph.[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
7. Platypleura kaempferi
This cicada in a unique species.[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
8. Jewel beetle, Chrysochroa fulgidissima
This is not a unique species, but it is the only one I currently have. The Italian release of DeAgonstini's World Insect Data Book had a related species, C. limbata
.[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
9. Hyposipalus gigas
This is another unique species, and not surprising, as it is very rare to get weevil figures marketed at the species or even genus level. This is the smallest figure (not including base) in the set, keeping in mind they are all 1:1.[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
10. Asian giant hornet, Vespa mandarina
Probably the most commonly-made Asian hymenopteran. Other figures are by Kaiyodo (twice), Rement, and Subarudo. Shineg made a larva!!![You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
11. Longhorned beetle, Rosalia batesi
This species was also made by Kaiyodo for the Choco Q Animatales Series. Kaiyodo also did an additional species in this genus.[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
12. SECRET: Damaster blaptoides
There are two versions of this figure. The original is on a base of leaves; the variant (also below) is depicted with a snail shell (D. blaptoides
is a snail predator). Kaiyodo also made two versions of this species.[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
I will try to do at least one more volume this weekend...