Alfred Russel Wallace : Alfred Wallace : A. R. Wallace :
Russel Wallace : Alfred Russell Wallace (sic)
Correction in "Island Life." (S448: 1892)
Editor Charles H. Smith's Note: A letter to the Editor printed on page 56 of the 19 May
1892 issue of Nature. To link directly to this page, connect with:
In Dr. Merriam's recently published paper on "The Geographical Distribution of Life in North
America," an important, and to me almost inexplicable error in my work "Island Life" is pointed
out. It occurs at page 41 in the first edition, and is unfortunately repeated at the same page in the
recently published new edition, and consists chiefly in stating that the moles (Talpidæ) are almost
confined to the Palæarctic region. But a little further on in the same work (page 48 of first edition,
and page 49 of second edition) it is correctly stated that there are three peculiar genera of moles
in North America, and the same statement is made at page 115, and again at page 190 of vol. ii.
Of my "Geographical Distribution of Animals." At page 182 of vol. i. of the latter work, however,
the error first appears, and it is this erroneous passage that has remained unnoticed till now, and
was unfortunately repeated in "Island Life." In the same paragraph an error of a similar kind also
occurs as to the distribution of the lynxes. To correct these errors pages 41 and 42 of the new
edition of "Island Life" are being reprinted, and will be sent to all who possess the volume if they
will forward a stamped and directed envelope to the publishers.
Alfred R. Wallace.
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