Gustav Radde

Gustav Radde

Gustav Ferdinand Richard Radde (November 27, 1831 - March 2, 1903) was a German naturalist and explorer.

Radde was born in Danzig, the son of a schoolmaster. He had little formal education, and began a career as an apothecary. He became increasingly interested in natural history, and in 1852 he gave up his career and spent two years in the Crimea with the botanist Christian von Steven, collecting both plants and animals. He made further trips to southern Russia with Johann Friedrich von Brandt and Karl Ernst von Baer. He was botanist and zoologist on the East Siberian Expedition of 1855, led by the astronomer Ludwig Schwarz.

In 1864 he eventually settled in Tbilisi. In the same year he explored the region surrounding Mount Erebus, the highest mountain in the Western Palearctic. As well as collecting many plants he recorded the languages, ballads and customs of the local tribes. He set up a museum (the Caucasus Museum) and library in Tbilisi to exhibit his discoveries. His collecting expeditions included visits along the Black Sea coast and eastwards beyond the Caspian Sea to Askhabad. In 1895 he sailed to India and Japan with the Grand Duke Michael, and two years later he was official naturalist on a visit by members of the Russian Imperial Family to North Africa.He eventually became a Member of the Council of Statein Tiblisi.His publications include "Ornis Caucasica" (1884) and "Reisen im Süden von Ost-Sibirien in den Jahren 1855-59" (1862-1863). In 1884 he was honoured with the chairmanship of the first International Ornithological Congress in Vienna. He was also an honorary member of the D. O.-G., and a foreign member of the British Ornithologists' Union and the Zoological Society of London.

Animals named after him include birds such as Radde's Warbler and Radde's Accentor, and the Radde's Toad, or Siberian (Sand) Toad ("Bufo raddei").

Radde was an avid entomologist. His insect (and other) collections are divided: Transbaikal and Amur material is in the Zoological Museum of the Russian Academy of Science, Caucasus and Transcaspian material is in the Georgian National Museum Zoological Section, Pl. Lenina, Tbilisi.


*Barbara and Richard Mearns - "Biographies for Birdwatchers" ISBN 0-12-487422-3
*Anonym 1903 [Radde, G. F. R.] "Wien. ent. Ztg." 22 108
*Blasius, R. 1904 [Radde, G. F. R.] "Journ. Ornith". 52 1-49
*Daniel, K. 1904 [Radde, G. F. R.] "Münch. Koleopt. Zeitschr." 2 1904-1906(1) 93
*Kraatz, G. 1903 [Radde, G. F. R.] "Dtsch. ent. Ztschr." 47 7

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