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Department ofVertebrate Zoology

Division of Mammals

Tarsius bancanus
bar Don Wilson
    Don E. Wilson
    Curator Emeritus

  • Phone: (202)633-1265
  • Fax: (202)633-0182
  • E-mail: wilsond[at]

  • Mailing Address:
    Smithsonian Institution
    PO Box 37012, MRC 108
    Washington, DC 20013-7012

  • Shipping Address:
    Smithsonian Institution
    National Museum of Natural History
    10th and Constitution Ave, NW
    Washington, DC 20560-0108


Ph.D.: University of New Mexico, 1970
M.S.: University of New Mexico, 1967
B.S.: University of Arizona, 1965

Research Interests

I am interested in mammalian evolution and classification in general, spurred primarily by 2 decades of shepherding "Mammal Species of the World" through 2 editions. A career-long fascination with bats continues unabated, and a smattering of my research time is devoted to various aspects of chiropteran biology. My current major project involves the production of a 9-volume treatise entitled "Handbook of Mammals of the World." The first volume, covering Carnivores, was published by Lynx Edicions in 2009. The sixth volume, on Lagomorphs and Rodents, appeared in 2016. I also retain an interest in the mammals of North America, which began with "The Smithsonian Book of North American Mammals," and continued through 2 editions of the Princeton Field Guide to North American Mammals. Using text and photos from those 2 publications, we spun off a website devoted to North American Mammals and there is now an I-phone application as well.

Recent Publications

Wijedasa, Lahiru S., Jauhiainen, Jyrki, Könönen, Mari, Lampela, Maija, Vasander, Harri, LeBlanc, Marie-Claire, Evers, Stephanie, Smith, Thomas E. L., Yule, Catherine M., Varkkey, Helena, Lupascu, Massimo, Parish, Faizal, Singleton, Ian, Clements, Gopalasamy R., Aziz, Sheema Abdul, Harrison, Mark E., Cheyne, Susan, Anshari, Gusti Z., Meijaard, Erik, Goldstein, Jenny E., Waldron, Susan, Hergoualc'h, Kristell, Dommain, René, Frolking, Steve, Evans, Christopher D., et al 2017. Denial of long-term issues with agriculture on tropical peatlands will have devastating consequences. Global Change Biology, 23(3): 977-982. doi:10.1111/gcb.13516

Sánchez, Oscar and Wilson, Don E. 2016. Food items of Macrotus waterhousii (Chiroptera: Phyllostomidae) in central Mexico. THERYA, 7(1): 161-177. doi:10.12933/therya-16-355

. 2016. Handbook of the Mammals of the World: Lagomorphs and Rodents 1. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions.

Moratelli, Ricardo, Wilson, Don E., Gardner, Alfred L., Fisher, Robert D. and Gutiérrez, Eliécer E. 2016. A New Species of Myotis (Chiroptera: Vespertilionidae) from Suriname. In: Manning, R. W., Goetze, J. R. and Yancey, F. D., Contributions in Natural History: A Memorial Volume in Honor of Clyde Jones. Lubbock, Texas: Texas Tech University, pp.49-66.

Moratelli, Ricardo, Idárraga, Liu and Wilson, Don E. 2015. Range extension of Myotis midastactus? (Chiroptera, Vespertilionidae) to Paraguay. Biodiversity Data Journal, 3 doi:10.3897/BDJ.3.e5708

Moratelli, Ricardo and Wilson, Don E. 2015. A second record of Myotis diminutus (Chiroptera: Vespertilionidae): its bearing on the taxonomy of the species and discrimination from M. nigricans. Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington, 127(4): 533-542. doi:10.2988/0006-324X-127.4.533

Moratelli, Ricardo and Wilson, Don E. 2014. A new species of Myotis from Bolivia (Chiroptera, Vespertilionidae). Journal of Mammalogy, 95(4): E17-E25. doi:10.1644/14-MAMM-149

Wilson, Don E. and Mittermeier, Russell A. (eds.) 2014. Handbook of Mammals of the World: Sea Mammals Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. 614 pages.

. 2013. Handbook of Mammals of the World: Primates. Barcelona: LYNX.

Moratelli, Ricardo and Wilson, Don E. 2013. Distribution and natural history of Myotis lavali (Chiroptera, Vespertilionidae). Journal of Mammalogy, 94(3): 650-656. doi:10.1644/12-MAMM-A-257.1

Helgen, Kristofer M., Pinto, C. Miguel, Kays, Roland, Helgen, Lauren, Tsuchiya, Mirian, Quinn, Aleta J., Wilson, Don E. and Maldonado, Jesús E. 2013. Taxonomic revision of the olingos (Bassaricyon), with description of a new species, the Olinguito. ZooKeys, 324: 1-83. doi:10.3897/zookeys.324.5827

Ceballos, Gerardo and Wilson, Don E. 2013. Family Sciuridae. In: Ceballos, Gerardo, Mammals of Mexico. Mexico City: UNAM, pp.1-1016.

Wilson, Don E. 2013. Palabras de Don E. Wilson, distinguido con del premio Zotz por la Red Latinoamericana para la Conservación de los Murciélagos (RELCOM). In: Bernal Rodriguez, 16th International Bat Research Conference (IBRC). San Jose: RELCOM, pp.3

Moratelli, Ricardo, Gardner, Alfred L., de Olivera, J. A. and Wilson, Don E. 2013. Review of Myotis (Chiroptera, Vespertilionidae) from northern South America, including description of a new species. American Museum Novitates, 3780: 1-36.

Wilson, Don E. 2013. Chiroptera. In: Smith, A. T. and Xie, Y., Pocket guide to Mammals of China. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, pp.217-274.

Complete List of Wilson's Publications and Downloadable PDFs

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