emmons_louise_2Having much concerns for the acknowledgement of the crucial role women play in Science, especially in the tropical areas, as President of ATBC, I proposed the nomination of Louise H. Emmons as Honorary Fellow of the Association of Tropical Biology and Conservation in 2008.

Louise H. Emmons is an internationally outstanding scientist with an immense knowledge of tropical biology and conservation, especially of the vertebrate mammalian fauna, among them Rodents, Felids and Insectivores.

Louise H. Emmons received a Ph D on the “Ecology and behavior of African rainforest squirrels” that was defended in 1975 at the Cornell University, Field of Neurobiology and Behavior. Since 1980, Louise H. Emmons is Adjunct Scientist in Systematic Biology of the Division of Mammals, Smithsonian Institution, NHB390, and Research associate in Mammalogy at the Americal Museum of Natural History in Washington, DC (USA).

Louise H. Emmons started her carrier studying a community of squirrels in Gabon, but she then diversified her fields of interest and study species in all group of vertebrates throughout the tropics.

During her carrier, Louise H. Emmons has worked in the three continents, in Africa (Gabon and Madagascar), in Central (Honduras) and South America (Brazil, Colombia, Equator, French Guiana, Guyana, Peru, Trinidad) especially in the Amazon Basin, and in South-East Asia (Borneo, Malaysia and Papua New Guinea). Actually, she’s invested in Bolivia.


emmonsfeer_nightAmong the major group of Vertebrates she studies, we all remember her exemplary studies on Squirrels in Gabon, Felids and Rodents in Peru or Insectivores in Asia. But, she also considered all other vertebrate families in all tropical continents, and is today the most acknowledged female zoologist. Beside discovering and describing new species of Vertebrates, especially rodents, she also contributed to carry ecology and biology of Mammals in the most remote place of the rainforests. Indeed, I’ve been informed and I myself saw her now classic field guide “Neotropical Rainforest Mammals” at native people village in Brazil and Guyana.

Louise H. Emmons published a total of 80+ articles and chapters (52 as first author and 23 about rodents, specifically) in international peer-reviewed journals (among them 7 in Biotropica) and edited books. She wrote two books on mammalian fauna from both neo- and paleo-tropical regions. Several of these papers and book are today classics. Her papers are the results of studies carried out in America (56), Africa (13) and Asia (7), seven additional articles being general. In total, she co-authored 7 edited reports on biodiversity assessment, and wrote 12 review chapters on mammalian fauna in the three continents. Above all, she discovered and described several new genus and species of rodents in America and Asia.

Louise H. Emmons has been involved in numerous RAP (Rapid Assessment Program) and taught 2 field courses for Conservation International between 1990-1998 in several countries of South America and Borneo.

Louise H. Emmons is currently member of several professional societies and related organizations in both Northern and Southern America, in the field of Mammalogy (American Society of Mammalogists, biology (Biological Society of Washington, the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation), ecology (Ecological Society of America) and conservation (Society for Conservation Biology, Armonia (Bolivia), Asociacion Peruana Para La Conservacion de La Naturaleza).

In 2000 and 2001, Louise H. Emmons received the Parker Gentry Award for excellence and innovation in conservation/environmental biology (Field Museum of Natural History) and an Award for Outstanding Achievement from the Society of Women Geographers.

Therefore, in regards of her long-lasted dedication and accomplishment to the field of Tropical Biology and Conservation, there is no doubt that Louise H. Emmons is a perfect candidate for being elected as honorary fellow of the ATBC in 2008 and I am happy to propose her nomination.

Pierre-Michel Forget
ATBC President
8 February 2008


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