William Orville Ayres


William Orville Ayres

William Orville Ayres (September 11, 1817 - April 30, 1887) was an American physician and ichthyologist. Born in Connecticut, he studied to become a doctor at Yale University School of Medicine.

Ayres was also interested in natural science, however, particularly in ornithology. He became friends with famed ornithologist and painter John James Audubon, who named a woodpecker (now called the Northern Flicker) after him, mentioning him by name in his "Birds of America":

:I have named this handsome bird after my young and learned friend W. O. AYRES, Esq., who is well known to science as an excellent ichthyologist; and who also is well conversant with the birds of our country. [ [http://www.audubon.org/bird/boa/NSk.html Missouri Red-moustached Woodpecker ] ]

As the first Curator of Ichthyology of the California Academy of Sciences [http://www.calacademy.org/membership/membership.php] , Ayres wrote several many papers on the fish of California, despite poor facilities. In a letter to a colleague at the Smithsonian Institution Ayers pled for support for the fledgling academy:

:I am working along here in the dark as well as I can, with almost nothing in the way of books or means of reference, and what mistakes I make, some of you more advantageously situated must correct. [ [http://www.calacademy.org/calwild/2003spring/stories/earlyyears.html California Wild Spring 2003 - Science Amid the Saloons ] ]

Since there were no established scientific journals available, he turned to local newspapers to publish his descriptions of fish. [ [http://www.calacademy.org/exhibits/150/ichthyology.html California Academy of Sciences - 150th Anniversary Celebration ] ]

In 1882 Ayres wrote an article in "The American Naturalist", "The Ancient Man of Calaveras" about the Calaveras Skull, a human skull purported at the time to have been found in a mine in Calaveras County, California. He defended the claim that the skull was indeed of ancient origin. That the skull was of ancient provenance is now generally believed to have been a hoax.

Ayres's name (cited in Latin as "ayresii") is used in the binomial names of several species of birds and fish.

References


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • William Orville Ayres — (* 11. September 1817; † 30. April 1887) war ein US amerikanischer Mediziner und Ichthyologe. Inhaltsverzeichnis …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • William Orville Ayres — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Ayres. William Orville Ayres est un médecin et un ichtyologiste américain, né le 11 septembre 1817 à Connecticut et mort le 30 avril 1887. Il fait des études à Yale où il obtient un titre de docteur en médecine.… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Ayres — ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Anna Jean Ayres (1920–1989), Entwicklungspsychologin Anne Ayres (1816–1896), amerikanische Ordensgründerin Agnes Ayres (1898−1940; eigentl. Agnes Hinkle), US amerikanische Schauspielerin Benjamin Ayres (*… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • William Ayres — may refer to:*William Augustus Ayres (1867–1952), a Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Kansas *William Hanes Ayres (1916–2000), a Republican member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Ohio *William Orville Ayres… …   Wikipedia

  • Ayres — may refer to:People: * Anne Ayres (1816–1886), U.S. Episcopalian nun * William Orville Ayres (1817–1887), U.S. American physician and ichthyologist * Romeyn B. Ayres (1825–1888), Union general in the American Civil War * Agnes Ayres (1898–1940),… …   Wikipedia

  • Ayres —  Cette page d’homonymie répertorie des personnes (réelles ou fictives) partageant un même patronyme. Patronyme Ayres est un nom de famille notamment porté par : Agnes Ayres (1898 1940), actrice américaine du cinéma muet Anne Ayres (1816 …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Liste der Biografien/Ay — Biografien: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Genyonemus — Weißer Umber Weißer Umber (Genyonemus lineatus) Systematik Teilklasse: Echte Knochenfische (Teleostei) …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Genyonemus lineatus — Weißer Umber Weißer Umber (Genyonemus lineatus) Systematik Teilklasse: Echte Knochenfische (Teleostei) …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Liste de zoologistes — Attention, il n est pas d usage en zoologie d utiliser d abréviation pour les noms des auteurs (contrairement aux usages de la botanique, voir ici). Cette liste ne constitue pas une liste officielle. Nous attirons l attention du lecteur sur son… …   Wikipédia en Français