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John Gould (1804-1881) was the first dominant figure in Australian zoology. Published in parts over 18 years and illustrated with full colour lithographs by artist Henry Constantine Richter, The Mammals of Australia (1845-1863) was the first comprehensive publication on Australian mammals). While the work provides a snapshot of Australian mammal life in the nineteenth century, many of the species described by Gould in the three volumes are now endangered or extinct.
The Australian Museum is collating a comprehensive data set based on Gould’s publications, aggregating information such as species name changes, collector and artist names, and current conservation changes for each species. By transcribing information from the text and comparing it to modern sources, citizen scientists will assist researchers interested in Gould’s work to easily compare and identify links between Gould’s work and contemporary developments in mammalogy.