Article ID: CBB630540742

Alwyn Hasso von Wedel (1873–1957): Bird and Plant Collector on the Caribbean Coast of Panama (2018)


Hasso von Wedel, usually “H. Wedel” on specimen labels, settled on the northwestern Caribbean coast of Panama in the province of Bocas del Toro in 1898 and sustained himself mainly through the production of picture postcards and as a photographer for the United Fruit Company. He learned to prepare bird specimens in 1926 and collected widely in Bocas del Toro for various museums, mainly Harvard University's Museum of Comparative Zoology, at least up until 1939. Wedel made the first collections of birds from the easternmost Caribbean coast of Panama in the Comarca de San Blas at intervals from 1929 until 1934. He learned the fundamentals of botanical collecting in 1938 and made extensive collections of plants for the Missouri Botanical Garden from then until 1941, his specimens forming the basis for dozens of presumed new species, at least ten of which were named for him. His biological explorations appear to have ceased about the time the United States entered the Second World War, although he lived in Changuinola, Bocas del Toro, until his death at Almirante in 1957.

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Authors & Contributors
Baytop, Asuman
Ian J. Mason
Matteo Ruzzon
Larsson, Eleanor
Di Meo, Alessandro
Robert P. Prŷs-Jones
Archives of Natural History
Osmanli Bilimi Arastirmalari: Studies in Ottoman Science
Centaurus: International Magazine of the History of Mathematics, Science, and Technology
Scientia Canadensis: Journal of the History of Canadian Science, Technology, and Medicine
Environment and History
Ian J. Mason
University of Wisconsin at Madison
University of Oklahoma
Princeton University
Collectors and collecting
Natural history
Allen, Arthur Augustus
Kellogg, Peter Paul
Hume, Allan Octavian
Huet, Nicolas
Razumovsky, Alexei
Demidov, Prokophy
Time Periods
19th century
20th century
20th century, early
18th century
21st century
20th century, late
South Asia
Cornell University, Laboratory of Ornithology
Cornell Library of Natural Sounds
Museo di Scienze Naturali di Torino
Museo Calderini
Rothschild Museum (England)
California Academy of Sciences

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