William Doherty

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
For other people named William Doherty, see William Doherty (disambiguation).

William Doherty (May 15, 1857, Cincinnati – May 25, 1901 Nairobi) was an American entomologist who specialised in Lepidoptera and later also collected birds for the Natural History Museum at Tring.[1] He died of dysentry while in Nairobi.[2]


Arhopala alitaeus mirabella Doherty, 1889 J. asiat. Soc. Bengal

From 1877 to 1881, before he became a collector, he traveled widely in Europe, the Middle East and thence to Persia. His entomological collecting activities commenced in earnest in 1882 while in South Asia.[2] He collected butterflies in India, Burma, the Andaman Islands, Nicobar, Siam, Indonesia, Malaysia, New Guinea and British East Africa and described many new species. After a visit to Hartert at Tring in 1895, he was recruited by Walter Rothschild, 2nd Baron Rothschild, who came to regarded him as his best bird collector.[2]


His collections are shared between the American Museum of Natural History,[3] the Carnegie Museum in Pittsburgh, the Brooklyn Museum, the Museum of Comparative Zoology in Cambridge, and the National Museum of Natural History in Washington.


Many of the birds he collected for Lord Rothschild were named after him, including Doherty's bushshrike Malaconotus dohertyi, red-naped fruit dove Ptilinopus dohertyi, Sumba cicadabird Coracina dohertyi and crested white-eye Lophozosterops dohertyi.


  1. ^ Novitates Zoologicae v8 (1901) pp.494-506 Obituary by Ernst Hartert [includes bibliography]
  2. ^ a b c Beolens, Bo; Watkins, Michael; Grayson, Michael (2014). The Eponym Dictionary of Birds. Bloomsbury Publishing. ISBN 1472905741. 
  3. ^ LeCroy, M (2003). "Type Specimens of Birds in the American Museum of Natural History Part 5. Passeriformes: Alaudidae, Hirundinidae, Motacillidae, Campephagidae, Pycnonotidae, Irenidae, Laniidae, Vangidae, Bombycillidae, Dulidae, Cinclidae, Troglodytidae, And Mimidae" (PDF). Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History. American Museum of Natural History. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 8, 2005. Retrieved 2007-06-09. 

External links[edit]

  • BHL Hartert, Ernst (1896) An account of the collections of birds made by Mr. William Doherty in the Eastern Archipelago London.