Journal of the Graduate Research Center


Several years ago, it became obvious that any sort of work with vertebrates undertaken at Southern Methodist University would require some sort of permanent collections serving as a basis for study. It was apparent, also, that collections of this sort would be useful in other ways to the community in general: to groups interested in nature study and conservation, to Scout groups, and to other educational organizations. The Dallas Museum of Natural History is an excellent museum from the standpoint of display of larger mammals and birds in their natural habitats, and it also houses a fine study-collection of birds representative of Texas and the Dallas area. As there were available, however, very few amphibian, reptile, and small-mammal specimens for study purposes, we decided to establish permanent collections of amphibians, reptiles, and mammals in the Department of Biology at the University. Those charged with this task felt that a collection of birds would unnecessarily duplicate the work of the staff at the Dallas Museum of Natural History. The present collecting program was begun in the summer of 1954. It has not been carried out on a large scale. Most of the collecting has been done in connection with classes in vertebrate zoology, and by such individuals as were interested enough to spend their free time in collecting and preserving specimens. I am particularly indebted to several former students whose efforts have added many specimens to the collections; Mr. Dilford Carter, Mr. Larry Roberts, and Mr. Warry Williams. The numbers of vertebrate specimens have increased slowly but steadily. At present, the specimens total 1,226, belonging to 47 families and 160 species. Each specimen bears a label that includes date and place of capture, the collector's name, and other pertinent information. Mammal specimens, in most cases, include both skin and skull.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License

Included in

Life Sciences Commons