Some Biogeographers, Evolutionists and Ecologists:
Chrono-Biographical Sketches

Hesse, Richard (Germany 1868-1944)
zoology, animal ecology

Hesse published plenty of research in his main field, the cellular and evolutionary biology of sensory organs, but it was as an advocate of an autecological approach to the study of animals and their environment that he really made his mark. In particular his Tiergeographie auf Ökologischer Grundlage was a major step forward in this respect, comparable to Charles Elton's Animal Ecology, published only three years later. The full impact of Hesse's work was not felt, however, until the book was expanded, translated into English, and re-published in 1937 as Ecological Animal Geography; a posthumous 1951 edition was again enlarged and met with even greater success. Through Hesse's initiative the dominating influence that historical approaches had held on zoogeographical studies until that point was finally broken, with ecological approaches fully coming into their own (and in turn facilitating the development of evolutionary ecology, conservation biology, and other interdisciplinary fields).

Life Chronology

--born in Nordhausen, Germany, on 20 February 1868.
--1892: Ph.D., University of Tübingen
--1894: made lecturer in zoology, University of Tübingen
--1901: advanced to associate professor of zoology, University of Tübingen
--1902: publishes his Abstammungslehre und Darwinismus
--1909: appointed professor of zoology at the Agricultural School (Landwirtschaftlichen Hochschule), Berlin
--1910-1914: publishes his Tierbau und Tierleben in Ihrem Zusammenhang Betrachtet in two volumes, with F. T. Doflein
--1914: made professor of zoology, University of Bonn
--1924: publishes his Tiergeographie auf Ökologischer Grundlage
--1926-1935: professor and director of the zoological institute at the University of Berlin
--1933: admitted to the German Academy of Natural Scientists Leopoldina
--1935: retires from the University of Berlin
--1937: made a corresponding member of the Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften (Bavarian Academy of Sciences)
--1937: publishes his Ecological Animal Geography, with W. C. Allee and K. P. Schmidt
--dies at Berlin, Germany, on 28 December 1944.

For Additional Information, See:

--Dictionary of German Biography, Vol. 4 (2003).
--Journal of Animal Ecology, Vol. 7(2) (1938): 398-400.
--Copeia, (1) (1952): 49-50.

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Copyright 2005 by Charles H. Smith. All rights reserved.

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