Russell Mittermeier

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Russell Alan Mittermeier (born November 8, 1949 in Bronx , New York City ) is an American anthropologist, primatologist and herpetologist.

Live and act

Mittermeier's parents Francis Xavier and Bertha Mittermeier were Germans who emigrated to New York City. As a member of the Phi Beta Kappa , he graduated from Dartmouth College with a Bachelor of Arts in 1971 . He graduated from Harvard University with a Masters of Arts in 1973 and a Ph.D. in 1977. in biological anthropology . For 30 years he conducted field studies on three continents and traveled to more than 20 countries in mainly tropical regions, particularly Brazil , Suriname and Madagascar . Mittermeier's work focuses on primates and turtles, protected areas, and other aspects of nature conservation. He is considered an expert in the fields of biological diversity, conservation of ecosystems, tropical biology and species protection. Mittermeier has been president of the conservation organization Conservation International since 1989 . In addition, he has been chairman of the IUCN Species Survival Commission's Primate Specialist Group since 1977 . From 1978 to 1989 he was head of the primate protection program of the WWF. In 1987 he became a member of the Linnean Society of New York. Between 1988 and 1989 he was chairman of the working group on biodiversity at the World Bank . Since 1995 he has been President of the Margot Marsh Biodiversity Foundation, which works to protect primate worldwide.

Mitter Meier discovered several new species of primates, including the Sanje mangabey , the Maués-marmoset and 2010, a new lemur species from the kind of fork-marked lemur . He wrote several popular science and scientific books and authored over 300 scientific articles. His most important works include Lemurs of Madagascar (1994) and Hotspots. Earth's Biologically Richest and Most Endangered Terrestrial Ecoregions (1999). Since 2009 he has been editor-in-chief of the nine-volume book series Handbook of the Mammals of the World , published by the Spanish publisher Lynx Edicions.

Mittermeier has been married to Cristina Goettsch , a Mexican marine biologist and managing director of the International League of Conservation Photographers, since 1991 . The couple have two sons.

Awards and dedication names

In 1988 Mittermeier received the gold medal of the San Diego Zoo . In 1995 he was honored with the Order of the Golden the Ark by Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands . In 1997 he was awarded the Order of the Southern Cross by the Brazilian head of state . The President of Suriname awarded him the Grand Sash and Order of the Yellow Star in 1998. In 1998 he was added to Time magazine 's list of “EcoHeroes for the Planet” . In 2004 he received the Aldo Leopold Award from the American Society of Mammalogists . In addition, his name is immortalized in the kind of epithets of the Mittermeier-Mausmakis (2006 by Edward E. Lewis), the Mittermeier-Wieselmakis (2006 by Clément Rabarivola) and the Mittermeier-Nacktgesichtsakis (2014 by Laura K. Marsh).

In 2016 Mittermeier was elected a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences .

Works (selection)


  • Nicholas Polunin, Lynn M. Curme: World who is who and does what in environment and conservation . P. 218, Earthscan, 1997, ISBN 978-1-85383-377-9
  • HW Wilson Company: Current Biography Yearbook . Vol. 53, p. 399.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ American Academy of Arts and Sciences : Newly Elected Fellows. In: Retrieved April 22, 2016 .