We developed an initial list for the Fauna of Alaska by collating checklists from the University of Alaska Museum Birds (UAM Birds), University of Alaska Museum Mammals (UAM Mammals), and the Amphibians and Reptiles of Alaska (MacDonald 2010). The compiled checklist provided a list of all accepted names for non-fish vertebrates in Alaska. We then reconciled the initial list of names in the state to recently published reference works and peer-reviewed literature (listed below) to determine accepted names, misapplied names, and synonyms. Citations are ordered alphabetically, rather than by priority, in the table below.
The alternative names that we’ve included are not meant to be an exhaustive list. Instead, they’re a collection of names that we’ve encountered during our research. Can’t find what you’re looking for? Avibase (birds) and the Mammals of Diversity Database (mammals) have more exhaustive lists of names, though the names they include have not necessarily been applied to Alaska populations.
The use of the word “synonym” is also taxonomically incorrect. At the moment, almost every alternative name is labeled as “synonym” – whether it results from a taxonomic split, a corrected spelling, or a change in genus. That’s something I hope to address in the future, hopefully by collaborating with folks whose taxonomic expertise can complement my database skills (is that you?).
In the meantime, we hope that the checklist can:
- Help you resolve some of the confusion you may be feeling.
- Help you stay current on taxonomic changes.
- Provide a starting point for a more comprehensive, synonymized checklist in the future.
The Fauna of Alaska doesn’t currently include infraspecies such as subspecies or populations. I recommend consulting NatureServe Explorer (all taxa), Avibase (birds), and MacDonald and Cook (for Alaska mammals only).
We do not include taxa whose occurrences are unsubstantiated in Alaska. A list of birds can be found in the Checklist of Alaska Birds, which is published by the University of Alaska Museum.
|1||Colella et al. 2021||Colella, J. P., L. M. Frederick, S. L. Talbot, and J. A. Cook. 2021. Extrinsically reinforced hybrid speciation within Holarctic ermine (Mustela spp.) produces an insular endemic. Diversity and Distributions 27(4):747–762. https://doi.org/10.1111/ddi.13234|
|2||Gibson et al. 2022||Gibson, D. D., L. H. DeCicco, N. R. Hajdukovich, S. C. Heinl, A. J. Lang, R. L. Scher, T. G. Tobish Jr., and J. J. Withrow. 2022. Checklist of Alaska Birds. 28th edition. Alaska Checklist Committee, University of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK, USA. Available: https://www.universityofalaskamuseumbirds.org|
|3||Hope et al. 2020||Hope, A. G., R. B. Stephens, S. D. Mueller, V. V. Tkach, and J. R. Demboski. 2020. Speciation of North American pygmy shrews (Eulipotyphla: Soricidae) supports spatial but not temporal congruence of diversification among boreal species. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 129(1):41–60.|
|4||Lausen et al. 2019||Lausen, C. L., M. Proctor, D. W. Nagorsen, D. Burles, D. Paetkau, E. Harmston, K. Blejwas, P. Govindarajulu, and L. Friis. 2019. Population genetics reveal Myotis keenii (Keen’s myotis) and Myotis evotis (long-eared myotis) to be a single species. Canadian Journal of Zoology 97(3):267–279.|
|5||Lepage et al. 2014||Lepage D, Vaidya G, Guralnick R. 2014. Avibase - A database system for managing and organizing taxonomic concepts. ZooKeys 135:117–135.|
|6||MacDonald 2010||MacDonald, S. O. 2010. The Amphibians and Reptiles of Alaska: A Field Handbook. Version 2.0. University of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK, USA. Available: https://faunaofalaska.org/wp-content/uploads/MacDonald_2010_Amphibians_and_Reptiles_of_Alaska.pdf|
|7||MDD 2021||Mammal Diversity Database. 2021. Mammal Diversity Database. Version 1.5. Available: http://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.4139818|
|8||Olson 2021||Olson, L. E. 2021. Checklist of the Mammals of Alaska. University of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK, USA. Available: https://www.uaf.edu/museum/collections/mammal/current-mammal-species-of|
|9||Patterson et al. 2021||Patterson, B. D., H. E. Ramirez-Chaves, J. F. Vilela, A. E. R. Soares, and F. Grewe. 2021. On the nomenclature of the American clade of weasels (Carnivora: Mustelidae). Journal of Animal Diversity 3(2):1-8. http://dx.doi.org/10.52547/JAD.2021.3.2.1|
|10||Vollmer et al. 2019||Vollmer N. L., E. Ashe, R. L. Brownell, F. Cipriano, J. G. Mead, R. R. Reeves, M. S. Soldevilla, and R. Williams. 2019. Taxonomic revision of the dolphin genus Lagenorhynchus. Marine Mammal Science 35:957–1057.|