My new book!

Scientific and Common Names
of the Reptiles and Amphibians of North America - Explained

Salamanders . Frogs and Toads . Turtles . Alligators and Crocodiles . Lizards . Snakes
Mythological Appendix . Biographical Appendix

Copyright and all rights reserved by Ellin Beltz, 2006 . Information for Users at the Bottom of the Page


This work is dedicated to Sister M. Benedicta Koller, O.S.B. who so graciously shared her knowlege and love of the Latin language and to Sister Catherine Lynch, O.S.B. for encouraging me to write.

The latest update (October to December 2006) combined the original description file and the main etymology pages to eliminate several hundred K of repeated data. The conversion was examined in beta form by Raymond Novotny, Ken Mierzwa and Eloise Beltz-Decker Mason along with HTML review by Ed Greenwood. The next step for the list is cross checking with other lists for the most up-to-date amphibian names as well as adding species introduced to the U.S.

Many individuals have helped since the inception of this project in 1986, in particular:
  • Michael Dloogatch provided source materials, computers, laser printing, moral and intellectual support and is truly the "god-father" of this project.
  • Eloise Beltz-Decker and Kenneth S. Mierzwa who gave up parts of several vacations visiting libraries, spent hours proofreading, found many sources and made many suggestions over the past 14 years.
  • Tom Johnson, recently retired from the Missouri Department of Conservation, early in this project provided the needed encouragement to keep me going on my first phase 3x5 cards.
  • Charles Bogert, John Applegarth, Roger Conant, Richard Hoffman, Richard Etheridge, Joseph Mitchell, Mrs. Grace Klauber, Philip Klauber, D. Elmo Hardy, George Baxter, John Behler, Ernest Liner, Kraig Adler, Robert Stebbins, Loren Moehn, Ron Altig, Henry Fitch, Edward Moll, Nita Rossman, John McKosker, David Lintz, Robert Murphy, William Woodin, Ted Brown, Whit Gibbons, Sherman and Madge Minton for their memories of their contemporaries in herpetology and their help in preparing their own biographies.
  • Joseph Collins, Darryl Frost and Hobart Smith for their repeated readings and assistance particularly in the difficult middle part of the project
  • Chicago Herpetological Society members Tom Anton, William Peterson, John Levell Jr., Carole Allen, Desiree Crawford and Steven L. Barten for their continued help and loan of books, journals and magazines.
  • David Wake, Steve Campbell, Steve Schwartzman, Mike Seidel and Donald Cunningham for finding typos and errors after it was on the web.
  • J.N. Stuart of New Mexico for carefully reviewing the turtles and lizards and providing information on several new species names and biographies.
  • David Chiszar (University of Colorado), Herndon Dowling (New York University), Carol Barsi (San Diego Zoo), R.A. Davis (Cincinnati Museum of Natural History), Mark R. Jennings, Alfredo Savador (Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales), Dennie Miller (Chihuahuan Desert Research Institute), Ernie Liner, John Applegarth (Oregon Herpetological Society), Adam Britton, Jeff Boundy and Ernest E. Williams (Museum of Comparative Zoology) for assistance with various species and genera.
  • David Hollombe for sending me the biographies of five people that I didn't have before (March 1, 2005).
  • Raymond Novotny, who for 14 years asked "what happened to your translations" each and every time we made contact and
  • Laura L. Sanders of Northeastern Illinois University for suggesting that I learn html publishing even though she didn't know that this manuscript was laying on 5.25 inch diskettes gathering dust.

Additional thanks are due to the following for facilitating my review of all of the original descriptions:
  • The Chicago Academy of Sciences
  • Hyman Marx and the staff of the Herpetology Department of the Field Museum of Natural History
  • Librarians and rare book curators at the Field Museum of Natural History
  • Science and technology librarians of the Chicago Public Library
  • Librarians and staff at the University of Illinois and the Natural History Survey in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois
  • Librarians and staff at the American Museum of Natural History, New York
  • The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa for unlimited access to their journals and publications
  • and to the literally hundreds of other people who have guided, helped, tolerated, and encouraged this work.
My new book!
Names of the Reptiles and Amphibians of North America - Explained

Salamanders . Frogs and Toads . Turtles . Alligators and Crocodiles . Lizards . Snakes
Mythological Appendix . Biographical Appendix

Ellin Beltz
December 5, 2006
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