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Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History
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Department of Vertebrate Zoology

Division of Birds

Labrador Duck
Labrador Duck
Christina Gebhard © Smithsonian Institution
bar Image of Phyllis and Mort Isler, Research Associates
    Morton L. and Phyllis R. Isler
    Research Associate

  • Phone: (703) 780-8039
  • Fax: (703) 780-8039
  • E-mail: antbird[at] or islermor[at]

  • Mailing Address:
    Smithsonian Institution
    Division of Birds
    PO Box 37012, MRC 116
    Washington, DC 20013-7012

  • Shipping Address:
    Smithsonian Institution
    Division of Birds
    10th and Constitution Ave, NW
    Washington, DC 20560-0116

Research Interests

Reconstruction of geographic patterns of speciation and reexamination of species limits in the Thamnophilidae and Grallariidae of the Neotropics, employing vocal and other behavioral as well as morphological data, in the context of molecular based phylogenies being developed by T. Chesser (Division of Birds) and other collaborators at Louisiana State University, The Field Museum, and the University do Los Andes (Bogotá). Development of an understanding of the evolution of vocal characters by ‘mapping’ them on an molecular-based phylogeny of the Thamnophilidae.

Recent Publications

Isler, Morton L. and Maldonado-Coelho, Marcos 2017. Calls distinguish species of Antbirds (Aves: Passeriformes: Thamnophilidae) in the genus Pyriglena. Zootaxa, 4291(2): 275-294. doi:10.11646/zootaxa.4291.2.3

Isler, Morton L. and Whitney, Bret M. 2017. Species limits in the genus Thamnistes (Aves: Passeriformes: Thamnophilidae): an evaluation based on vocalizations. Zootaxa, 4291(1): 192-200. doi:10.11646/zootaxa.4291.1.12

Isler, Morton L., Bravo, Gustavo A. and Brumfield, Robb T. 2014. Inundicola Bravo, Isler, and Brumfield 2013 is a junior synonym of Akletos Dunajewski 1948 (Aves: Passeriformes: Thamnophilidae). Zootaxa, 3779(3): 399-400. doi:10.11646/zootaxa.3779.3.10

Isler, Morton L., Bravo, Gustavo A. and Brumfield, Robb T. 2014. Systematics of the obligate ant-following clade of antbirds (Aves: Passeriformes: Thamnophilidae). Wilson Journal of Ornithology, 126(4): 635-648. doi:10.1676/13-199.1

Complete List of Isler's Publications and Downloadable PDFs

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