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Department of Vertebrate Zoology

Division of Birds

Labrador Duck
Labrador Duck
Christina Gebhard © Smithsonian Institution
bar Image of Richard Zusi, Emeritus Curator
    Richard L. Zusi
    Emeritus Curator

  • Phone: (202) 633-0797
  • Fax: (202) 633-8084
  • E-mail: zusir[at]

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

  • Shipping Address:
    Smithsonian Institution
    Division of Birds
    1000 Constitution Ave, NW
    Washington, DC 20004


PhD. University of Michigan (1959)
M.S. University of Michigan (1953)
B.A. Northwestern University (1951)

Research Interests

Current research interests include: comparative osteology and myology of birds, with special reference to hummingbirds; functional and phylogenetic aspects of morphological variation in birds.

Selected Publications

Zusi, Richard L. 2013. Introduction to the Skeleton of Hummingbirds (Aves: Apodiformes, Trochilidae) in Functional and Phylogenetic Contexts (Introducción al Esqueleto de los Colibríes (Aves: Apodiformes: Trochilidae) en Contextos Funcionales y Filogenéticos). Ornithological Monographs, 77(1): 1-94. doi:10.1525/om.2013.77.1.1

Zusi, Richard L. and Gill, Frank B. 2009. The Marvelous Tail of Loddigesia Mirabilis (Trochilidae). The Auk, 126(3): 590-603. doi:10.1525/auk.2009.08216

Livezey, Bradley C. and Zusi, Richard L. 2007. Higher-order phylogeny of modern birds (Theropoda, Aves: Neornithes) based on comparative anatomy. II. analysis and discussion. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, 149(1): 1-95. doi:10.1111/j.1096-3642.2006.00293.x

Zusi, Richard L. 2006. In memoriam: Paul Slud, 1919-2006. The Auk, 123(4): 1196-1197. doi:10.3157/0013-872X(2006)117[422:ONV]2.0.CO;2

Zusi, Richard L. and Livezey, Bradley C. 2006. Variation in the os palatinum and its structural relation to the palatum osseum of birds (Aves). Annals of Carnegie Museum, 75(3): 137-180. doi:10.2992/0097-4463(2006)75[137:VITOPA]2.0.CO;2

Livezey, Bradley C. and Zusi, Richard L. 2006. Higher-order phylogeny of modern birds (Theropoda, Aves: Neornithes) based on comparative anatomy: I. methods and characters. Bulletin of Carnegie Museum of Natural history, 37: 1-544.

Zusi, Richard L. and Hamas, M. J. 2001. Bats and birds as potential pollinators of three species of Marcgravia lianas on Dominica. Caribbean Journal of Science, 37(3-4): 274-278.

Livezey, B. C. and Zusi, Richard L. 2001. Higher-order phylogenetics of modern Aves based on comparative anatomy. Netherlands Journal of Zoology, 51(2): 179-205.

Zusi, Richard L. and Livezey, B. C. 2000. Homology and phylogenetic implications of some enigmatic cranial features in Galliform and Anseriform birds. Annals of Carnegie Museum, 69(3): 157-193.

Zusi, Richard L. 1996. Family Rynchopidae (Skimmers). In: Hoyo, J. d., Elliott, A. and Sargatal, J., Handbook of the Birds of the World. Barcelona: Lynx Editions,() pp.668-677.

Graves, Gary R. and Zusi, Richard L. 1990. Avian Body Weights from the Lower Rio Xingu, Brazil. Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club, 110: 20-25.

Graves, Gary R. and Zusi, Richard L. 1990. An Intergeneric Hybrid Hummingbird (Heliodoxa-Leadbeateri X Heliangelus-Amethysticollis) from Northern Colombia. The Condor, 92(3): 754-760.

Zusi, Richard L. 1989. A Modified Jaw Muscle in the Maui Parrotbill (Pseudonestor, Drepanididae). The Condor, 91(3): 716-720.

James, Helen F., Zusi, Richard L. and Olson, Storrs L. 1989. Dysmorodrepanis munroi (Fringillidae: Drepanidini), a valid genus and species of Hawaiian finch. Wilson Bulletin, 101(2): 159-179.

Zusi, Richard L. 1987. A Feeding Adaptation of the Jaw Articulation in New-World Jays (Corvidae). The Auk, 104(4): 665-680.

Zusi, Richard L. 1985. Muscles of the Neck, Trunk and Tail in the Noisy Scrub-bird, Atrichornis clamosus, and Superb Lyrebirds, Menura novaehollandiae (Passeriformes: Atrichornithidae and Menuridae). Records of the Australian Museum, 37: 229-242.

Zusi, Richard L. 1985. Skimmer. In: Campbell, B. and Lack, E., A Dictionary of Birds. : ,() pp.546-547.

Zusi, Richard L. and Bentz, Gregory Dean 1984. Myology of the purple-throated Carib (Eulampis jugularis) and other hummingbirds (Aves: Trochilidae). Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology, 385: 1-70. doi:10.5479/si.00810282.385

Zusi, Richard L. 1984. A functional and evolutionary analysis of rhynchokinesis in birds. Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology, 395: 1-40. doi:10.5479/si.00810282.395

Tallman, D. A. and Zusi, Richard L. 1984. A Hybrid Red Crossbill-Pine Siskin (Loxia-Curvirostra X Carduelis-Pinus) and Speculations on the Evolution of Loxia. The Auk, 101(1): 155-158.

Zusi, Richard L., Wood, D. S. and Jenkinson, M. A. 1982. Remarks on a World-Wide Inventory of Avian Anatomical Specimens. The Auk, 99(4): 740-757.

Zusi, Richard L. 1982. Infraspecific Geographic-Variation and the Subspecies Concept. The Auk, 99(3): 606-608.

Wood, Darwin S., Zusi, Richard Laurence and Jenkinson, Marion Anne 1982. World inventory of avian spirit specimens, 1982 American Ornithologists' Union: Oklahoma Biological Survey.

Zusi, Richard L. and Bentz, Gregory Dean 1982. Variation of a Muscle in Hummingbirds and Swifts and Its Systematic Implications. Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington, 95(2): 412-420.

Bentz, Gregory D. and Zusi, Richard L. 1982. The Humeroulnar Pulley and Its Evolution in Hummingbirds. The Wilson Bulletin, 94(1): 71-73.

Zusi, Richard L. and Bridge, D. 1981. On the Slit Pupil of the Black Skimmer (Rynchops-Niger). Journal of Field Ornithology, 52(4): 338-340.

Zusi, Richard L. 1980. Penguin. In: The Academic American Encyclopedia. : ,() pp.143

Zusi, Richard L. 1978. The Interorbital Septum in Cardueline Finches. Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club, 98(1): 5-10.

Zusi, Richard L. 1978. Remarks on the Generic Allocation of Pseudochelidon sirintarae. Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club, 98(1): 13-15.

Zusi, Richard L. and Bentz, G. D. 1978. Appendicular Myology of the Labrador Duck (Camptorhynchus-Labradorius). The Condor, 80(4): 407-418.

Zusi, Richard L. 1978. Notes on Song and Feeding-Behavior of Orthonyx-Spaldingii. Emu, 78(JUL): 156-157.

Zusi, Richard L. 1975. An Interpretation of Skull Structure in Penguins. In: Stonehouse, Bernard, The Biology of Penguins. London: The Macmillan Press, Ltd, pp.59-84.

Zusi, Richard L. 1974. Charadriiformes. In: Encyclopaedia Britannica. pp.33-42.

Zusi, Richard L. 1970. Functional Anatomy in Systematics. Taxon, 20(1): 75-84.

Zusi, Richard L. and Marshall, J. T. 1970. A Comparison of Asiatic and North American Sapsuckers. The Natural History Bulletin of the Siam Society, 23(3): 393-407.

Zusi, Richard L. and Jehl, Joseph R., Jr. 1970. The Systematic Relationships of Aechmorhynchus, Prosobonia, and Phegornis (Charadriiformes; Charadrii). The Auk, 87(4): 760-780.

Zusi, Richard L. 1962. Structural Adaptations of the Head and Neck in the Black Skimmer The Nuttall Ornithological Club. 101 pages.

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