Mushi-Sha: Be-Kuwa #61

02 November 2016

If you are interested in Japanese beetle rearing trends, you might have heard of this magazine named, Be-Kuwa published by Mushi-Sha, the famous beetle shop located in Japan.

‘Be’ of Be-Kuwa stands for the two first alphabet of English word ‘Beetle,’ and then ‘Kuwa’ stands for the first two letters of kuwagata (くわがた). Kuwagata is Japanese word meaning stag beetles.

According to the Mr. Yasuhiko Kasahara (one of the editors for Be-Kuwa), Be-Kuwa has its inception back in January 2000. It started as a special issue dispatched from its sister magazine named 月刊むし ( Gekkan-Mushi, meaning a Bug Monthly).  Mushi-sha, the publisher, saw the opportunity to publish the new magazine exclusively for beetle breeding/rearing enthusiasts soon after the Japanese government permitted the importation of big and well-known alive beetles from the overseas in 1999. It is quarterly issued in January, April, July, and October, named as winter, spring, summer, and autumn issue respectively. It is 128 paged magazine typically begins the page with a feature photo guide such as Hercules Beetles with descriptions of its subspecies, biology, taxonomy, etc. Following that, most of the pages discusses the beetle breeding/rearing or collection reports from its seasoned readers. Then breeding/rearing tips from amateur and experts are followed. Finally the magazine concludes with the readers’ voices corner. In every winter issues, pages are filled with recognition of new beetle size records and its rearer.

In this Be-Kuwa magazine, I happened to have a chance to write and submit an article through Mr. Yasuhiko Kasahara. He read my article in Scarabs #74, where I discussed about beetle rearing trends in South Korea, and he was interested to have it in the Be-Kuwa as well. I accepted the request as it is such a great opportunity. Mr. Kasahara gave me more than enough time to work on this. We discussed and worked together for about 7 to 8 months until the date of publish. I got a lot of help from my colleagues back in South Korea. They provided me multiple images to be used in Be-Kuwa, and some of them also helped me looking for the detailed information, such as history of beetle rearing.

The title of the article is: 知られざる世界の昆虫事情 第 9 回 大韓民国編 (pronounced as Shirarezaru-Sekkai-no-konchuu-jijyo-daikyukai-daikanminkokuhen), meaning [Unknwon World of Insects, the 9th: Republic of Korea]. As it is a series work of Mr. Kasahara with many authors all over the world, an appropriate title was already there. The issue has finally published and printed out in mid-October, and I just received a copy of magazine from Mr. Kasahara today. I really appreciate him for giving me a such a great opportunity and I hope I can write another article with him in the near future. Below is some images of scanned magazine cover and article cover.

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Unfortunately, Be-Kuwa is not officially being sold in the U.S. (as there is no seller), however, I saw some eBay sellers located in Japan send out the magazine overseas. Be-Kuwa is quite a popular magazine even in the Japan, so you might not be able to obtain a new copy for past issues. If there is any species issue you would like to make a purchase, you might have to be hurry to do so.

Kim, J. (2016). 知られざる世界の昆虫事情 第 9 回 大韓民国編 [The Unknown World of Insects, the 9th: Republic of Korea]. Be-Kuwa, 61: 98-102.

*This post is cross-posted in Korean language at:

4 November 2016 Updates:
As I found couple of different information in the printed article, I was displeased as I never heard a prior notice about it. According to Mr. Kasahara, who I worked with, upon the editor’s request(s), couple of Latin Names are changed based on Japanese taxonomic systems as readers are mostly Japanese, and referenced the [The Lucanid Beetles of the World] published by Mushi-Sha. Following is changes made by editor(s). I’ll update as things are found, if this ever matters to you, refer to these:

[Original] → [How it changed to]

3 November 2016 (1)
Lucanus dybowskyi dybowskyiLucanus maculifemoratus dybowskyi
Trypoxylus dichotomus dichotomus→ 
Trypoxylus dichotomus septentrionalis

3 November 2016 (2)
None of references I mentioned in my original manuscript has been included in the article at all, but it can be due to the format of the article being an ‘interview.’ No discussion made with editor(s) over this matter.

7 November 2016
Mr. Kasahara accepted my request to put a line on the earliest possible issue that some Latin Names has been changed by editors for the better understanding of Japanese readers as there are different taxonomic viewpoint/system in Japan and South Korea.

24 January 2017
On the issue 62, at the last paragraph of the ‘The Unknown World of Insects,’mentions of the corrections and why the information has been changed in the article from the author’s original article as follows:



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