Storrs L. Olson
Storrs Lovejoy Olson (born April 3, 1944 in Chicago, Illinois) is an American biologist and ornithologist from the Smithsonian Institution. He is one of the world's foremost avian paleontologists. He achieved a BSc in Biology 1965 and a DSc in Paleornithology 1969, at faculty of Biology, Harvard University.
An appointment with Alexander Wetmore in 1967 led him to his main research field of paleornithology and to his work on Ascension Island and Saint Helena where he made remarkable discoveries in the 1970s, including the Saint Helena Hoopoe and the Saint Helena Crake. In 1976 he met his future wife Helen F. James who later became another known paleornithologist herself, focusing on Late Quaternary prehistoric birds.
During their pioneering research work on Hawaii, which lasted 23 years, Olson and James found and described the remains of 50 extinct bird species new to science, including the Nēnē-nui, the Moa-nalos the apteribises, and the Grallistrix "stilt-owls". He was also one of the authors of the description of the extinct rodent Noronhomys vespuccii. In 1982, he discovered subfossil bones of the long ignored Brace's Emerald on the Bahamas, which gave evidence that this hummingbird is a valid and distinct species. In November 1999, Olson wrote an open letter to the National Geographic Society, in which he criticized Christopher P. Sloan's claims about the dinosaur-to-bird transition which referred to the fake species Archaeoraptor. In 2000, he helped to resolve the mystery of Necropsar leguati from the World Museum Liverpool, which turned out to be an albinistic specimen of the Grey Trembler.
Olson was the 1994 recipient of the Loye and Alden Miller Research Award. He was formerly curator of birds at the United States National Museum of Natural History; as of 2009[update], he holds an emeritus position in the institution.
Several prehistoric bird species named after Storrs Olson, including Nycticorax olsoni, Himantopus olsoni, Puffinus olsoni Primobucco olsoni, Gallirallus storrsolsoni, and Quercypodargus olsoni.
- The Washington Biologists' Field Club: its members and its history (1900–2006). The Washington Biologists’ Field Club, 2007, ISBN 978-0-615-16259-1
- Loye and Alden Miller Research Award Recipients – Storrs Olson at the Wayback Machine (archived August 14, 2007). Cooper Ornithological Society
- Olson, Storrs L. (1975). "Paleornithology of St Helena Island, south Atlantic Ocean". Smithsonian Contributions to Paleobiology 23.
- Helen F. James. National Museum of Natural History. Smithsonian Institution
- James, Helen F. & Olson, Storrs L. (1991). "Descriptions of thirty-two new species of birds from the Hawaiian Islands: Part I. Non-passeriformes". Ornithological Monographs 45: 42–47. doi:10.2307/40166794.
- Carleton, M.D. and Olson, S.L. (1999). "Amerigo Vespucci and the rat of Fernando de Noronha: a new genus and species of Rodentia (Muridae, Sigmodontinae) from a volcanic island off Brazil's continental shelf". American Museum Novitates 3256: 1–59. hdl:2246/3097.
- Graves, Gary R. and Olson, Storrs L. "Chlorostilbon bracei Lawrence, an extinct species of Hummingbird from New Providence Island, Bahamas". Auk 104 (2): 296–302.
- El 'escándalo archaeoraptor' José Luis Sanz y Francisco Ortega. El País, 16 February 2000
- Olson, Storrs L.; Fleischer, Robert C.; Fisher, Clemency T. and Bermingham, Eldredge. "Expunging the ‘Mascarene starling’ Necropsar leguati: archives, morphology and molecules topple a myth". Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club 125 (1): 31–42. hdl:10088/1564.
- Loye and Alden Miller Research Award Recipients at the Wayback Machine (archived August 14, 2007). Cooper Ornithological Society
- "Birds Staff, Division of Birds, NMNH". Retrieved 2009-12-11.
- Bourne, W. R. P., Ashmole, N. P. & Simmons K. E. L. (2003). "A new subfossil night heron and a new genus for the extinct rail from Ascension Island, central tropical Atlantic Ocean". Ardea 91 (1): 45–51.
- Bickart, K. J. (1990). "The birds of the late Miocene-early Pliocene Big Sandy Formation, Mohave County, Arizona". Ornithological Monographs 44 (44): 1–72. doi:10.2307/40166673.
- Rando, J. C.; Alcover, J. A. (2007). "Evidence for a second western Palaearctic seabird extinction during the last Millennium: The Lava Shearwater Puffinus olsoni". Ibis 150: 188. doi:10.1111/j.1474-919X.2007.00741.x.
- Feduccia, A. & Martin, L. D. (1976). "The Eocene zygodactyl birds of North America (Aves: Piciformes)". Smithsonian Contributions to Paleobiology 27: 101–110.
- Kirchman, Jeremy J.; & Steadman, David W. (2006). "New Species of Rails (Aves: Rallidae) From an Archaeological Site on Huahine, Society Islands". Pacific Science 60 (2): 281–298. doi:10.1353/psc.2006.0007. hdl:10125/22565.
- Mourer-Cliauviré, C. (1989). "Les Caprimulgiformes et les Coraciiformes de l'Éocène et de l'Oligocène des phosphorites du Quercy et description de deux genres nouveaux de Podargidae et Nyctibiidae". Acta Congr. Int. Ornithol. 19: 2047–2055.
- Smithsonian critiques National Geographic Society's claims about dinosaur to bird evolution in an open letter
- Hawaii's Vanished Birds – About the research work by Olson and James