person:john james audubon

  • « Le ciel était littéralement rempli de pigeons, la lumière de midi était obscurcie comme par une éclipse ; les fientes pleuvaient comme des flocons de neige fondante. Les pigeons continuèrent à passer en nombre toujours aussi important durant trois jours consécutifs »

    – John James Audubon, ornithologue, écrit vers 1830 au nouveau monde.

    Et puis les colons blancs achevèrent ces immenses populations de tourtes voyageuses (passenger pigeon) importantes pour la subsistances de peuples amérindiens et des écosystèmes (depuis, ils ont pratiquement achevé ces deux derniers...)

    A mettre en perspective avec

  • Audubon Made Up At Least 28 Fake Species To Prank A Rival | Atlas Obscura

    Pranks are meant to be discovered—what’s the point in fooling someone if they never notice they’ve been fooled? But one 19th century prank, sprung by John James Audubon on another naturalist, was so extensive and so well executed that its full scope is only now coming to light.

    The prank began when the French naturalist Constantine Rafinesque sought on Audubon on a journey down the Ohio River in 1818. Audubon was years away from publishing Birds in America, but even then he was known among colleagues for his ornithological drawings. Rafinesque was on the hunt for new species—plants in particular—and he imagined that Audubon might have unwittingly included some unnamed specimens in his sketches.

    Rafinesque was an extremely enthusiastic namer of species: during his career as a naturalist, he named 2,700 plant genera and 6,700 species, approximately. He was self-taught, and the letter of introduction he handed to Audubon described him as “an odd fish.” When they met, Audubon noted, Rafinesque was wearing a “long loose coat...stained all over with the juice of plants,” a waistcoat “with enormous pockets” and a very long beard. Rafinesque was not known for his social graces; as John Jeremiah Sullivan writes, Audubon is the “only person on record” as actually liking him.

    #cryptozoologie #histoire #zoologie