Newly donated item, Marsupials of Australia

Professor Kristofer Helgen, Philip Wollen OAM, University Librarian Teresa Chitty, and University Vice-Chancellor Peter Rathjen

This week the library was delighted to receive a copy of Marsupials of Australia: The Kangaroos, Wallabies and Rat-Kangaroos / text by John Calaby and Tim Flannery, Illustrated by Rosemary Woodford Ganf. Published by Mallon Publishing in 2005, this book is part of a limited edition run which comprises only 650 copies.

Generously donated by Philip Wollen, the work is volume three of a series and covers the superfamily of marsupials known as macropods - which range in size and habitat diversity from the largest marsupial of all, the Red kangaroo, to the smallest, the Musky rat-kangaroo, as well as extinct species.

This volume is signed by both Tim Flannery and Rosemary Woodford Ganf, and was originally gifted to Philip Wollen by Tim Flannery.


About the artist

Rosemary Woodford Ganf has been called the best natural history artist in the world and a successor to Elizabeth and John Gould, although she would prefer to be associated with the work of Audubon. Her meticulous paintings depict all diagnostic features of the animals in perfect focus, superior to photographs of animals which are difficult to ‘pose.’

More information about the artist and work is available from the “ABC In Conversation” interview from Thursday 15 December 2005.


Native animal studies at the University

The University took the lead in native animal studies with the appointment of Frederic Wood Jones, the Elder Professor of Anatomy from 1920 to 1926, who was attracted to Adelaide by the opportunity to study the local fauna.

He was also Honorary Curator of Mammals at the South Australian Museum, and 1923 he published his illustrated Mammals of South Australia that disproved the notion that marsupials were “born on the teat” rather than from the uterus of the mother.

Wood Jones was also instrumental in the establishment of the Chair and Department of Zoology. This beautiful collection of marsupial drawings will complement Wood Jones original drawings for his writings on marsupials which are held in Special Collections, and support not only the teaching of zoology but also associated science courses, such as Wildlife Conservation Biology and veterinary studies.

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