Nine ordinary and one special meetings have been held, at which twenty-eight papers were read. These were contributed by thirteen members, and comprise fourteen on Zoology, nine on Miscellaneous subjects, three on Botany, and two on Chemistry. A detailed list of these papers is appended to this report.
In addition to the ordinary meetings of the Institute, the Council, as in the last few years, established a series of popular scientific lectures. The attendance at these was fair, but not such as might be desired. The lectures delivered were as follows:—(1) On Instinct, by Professor F. W. Hutton; (2) on the Construction of the Telescope, by Prof. C. H. H. Cook; (3) on the Immortality of the Cosmos, by Professor A. W. Bickerton; (4) on the Origin and Progress of the Canterbury Museum, by Professor J. von. Haast; (5) on the Recent Progress of Electric Science, by Professor Bickerton; (6) on the Ventilation of Buildings, by Mr. T. S. Lambert.
Sixteen new members have been elected during the year, making the number on the books at the present time 199.
Through the liberality of the Board of Governors of Canterbury College, arrangements have been made by which the Library of the Institute has been placed in a separate room, rendering it more convenient for the purpose of study. The Library is now open for the issue of books every Saturday evening from 7 to 9, and members requiring books at other times can obtain the same on application to the sub-librarian.
The donations of the year comprise twenty-two works which have been placed in the Library, and also three valuable type collections of microscopic objects:—one of New Zealand Polyzoa, presented by Professor F. W. Hutton; one of New Zealand Coccidæ, and one of New Zealand Desmidieæ, the last two presented by Mr. W. M. Maskell. A detailed list of the donations is appended to this report.
The report of the microscopical section shows favourable work during the year, and the Council would take this opportunity of drawing the attention of members to the facilities which are given for work by the establishment of sections, and expresses the hope that next year will find some of the other sections doing as good work as the microscopical. The report of the microscopical section is as follows:
The Microscopical section has held a number of meetings since the begining of the session; on an average two in each month. Numerous preparations connected with the work undertaken by various members have been exhibited at these meetings, chiefly in the following branches of Science:—
Zoology.—Mollusca, Crustacea, Homoptera, Rotifera.
Botany.—Freshwater Algæ, principally Diatomaceæ, and Desmidieæ.
Several new genera and species of the above have been investigated, and papers thereon have been submitted to the Institute. Other papers embodying original research are in course of preparation.
In accordance with the rule of the Institute, which directs that it shall devote one-third of its annual revenue to the formation or support of some public library or museum, the Council has, in lieu of such contributions for the year 1880, purchased and presented to the Canterbury Museum the series of imitation ivories issued by the Arundel Society of London.
The Honourable W. Rolleston has been chosen by the Council to represent the Institute at the annual election of the Board of Governors of the New Zealand Institute.
The Council recommends Professor Alphonse Milne-Edwards, of Paris, as an honorary member of the New Zealand Institute, in consideration of his scientific eminence.
The Honorary Treasurer submits the balance-sheet of accounts for the year, showing a balance in hand of £25 5s. 2d.; the receipts having been £193 16s. 3d., inclusive of a balance from last year of £7 6s. 9d., and the expenditure on books and collections, £168 9s. 1d.