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New research usually is disseminated to the scientific world first through presentation of papers at scientific meetings. Most scientific societies have annual meetings devoted to society business and to the presentation of "platform" papers (usually a 15 or 20 minute oral presentation with various media where a researcher presents research and where questions from the audience are answered) and poster sessions (where posters present the research through text and pictures; usually a period of time is set where the researcher will be at the poster to answer questions).

The next dissemination (and sometimes the first) is via publication in a scientific journal (or sometimes in publications by museums, etc.). Traditionally, this has been a print journal, but various experiments in on-line journals are on-going. Journals usually are sponsored by scientific societies, though professional publishing houses also produce journals now (usually at a much higher cost than those sponsored by scientific societies). The usual process is for a manuscript to be sent to an editor who scans it for proper format and suitability for the journal and then sends it out to (usually two, sometimes three) referees in the field treated by the paper. Referees examine the manuscript for suitability, originality, accuracy, format, grammar, etc., and make a recommendation to the editor. Usual recommendations are: accept without revision, publish with minor revisions, revise and resubmit, or reject. Although the time between submission and publication varies, 9 month to 1.5 years probably is a reasonable range for the average time.

After publication in a scientific outlet, the next phase (if the work is important enough) involves incorporating the material into textbooks. This usually is several more years, so textbook information often is out of date—one figure sometimes given is that the average information probably appeared in the primary literature 10 years or more before it's being accessed by students (keeping in mind that most texts are used for several years).

Some sources for the primary literature and some general references for the subjects considered in this course appear below. More will be added from time to time. More literature on the Chihuahuan Desert is given in the Centennial Museum's Chihuahuan Desert Bibliography page and the Chihuahuan Desert Web Links page.

Acta Theriologica, a quarterly international journal of mammalogy, covering all aspects of mammalian biology. It publishes original research reports, short communications (Fragmenta Theriologica), and book reviews. The journal also includes review papers.

The Auk. A quarterly journal of ornithology published by the American Ornithologists' Union. Student memberships are $25 per year, which includes the journal.

The Condor. A quarterly journal of ornithology, the Condor, is published by the Cooper Ornithological Society. Student memberships are $55 per year for complete resources, $25 per year for access to the Condor online, but no print edition.

The Journal of Mammalogy published by the American Society of Mammalogists. Student membership is $35 per year. The Society also publishes Mammalian Species, short accounts of species summarizing major aspects of their biology; usually somewhere around 20 accounts per year (soon to be online only).

Mammalia is an international journal of mammalogy publishing in French and English original notes and research papers dealing with all aspects of mammalian biology. It also includes book reviews and short information.

American Ornithologists' Union. 1998. Check-list of North American Birds. 7th ed. American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, D.C. 829 pp.

Baker, R. J., L. C. Bradley, R. D. Bradley, J. W Dragoo, M. D. Engstrom, R. S. Hoffmann, C. A. Jones, F. Reid, D. W. Rice, and C. Jones. 2003. Revised checklist of North American mammals north of Mexico, 2003. Museum of Texas Tech University, Occasional Papers 229:1-23.

Contreras-Balderas, S., and M. L. Lozano-Vilano. 1994 Water, endangered fishes, and development perspectives in arid lands of Mexico. Conservation Biology 8:379–387.

Edwards, R. J., G. P. Garret, and E. Marsh-Matthews. 2002. Conservation and status of the fish communities inhabiting the Río Conchos basin and middle Rio Grande, México and U.S.A. Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries 12: 119–132, 2002. [link is to pdf file]

Findley, J. S. 1987. The Natural History of New Mexican Mammals. University of New Mexico Press, Albuquerque, 164 pp. Includes all the mammals found in the El Paso area plus those in New Mexico that are not in our region.

Frey, J. K. 2004. Taxonomy and distribution of the mammals of New Mexico: An annotated checklist. Museum of Texas Tech University, Occasional Papers 240:1-32.

Hall, S. A. 1990. Pollen evidence for historic vegetational change, Hueco Bolson, Texas. Texas Journal of Science, 42:399-403.

Metcalf, A. L., and R. A. Smartt. 1997. Land snails of New Mexico. New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science, Bulletin 10:i-iii, 1-145.

Miller, R. R. 1961. Man and the changing fish fauna of the American Southwest. Papers of the Michigan Academy of Sciences, Arts, and Letters 46:365–404.

Nowak, R. M. 1999. Walker's Mammals of the World, 2nd ed. Vol. 1 + vol. 2, 1936 pp. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore.

Peterson, R. T., and E. L. Chalif. 1973. A field guide to Mexican birds and adjacent Central America. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston.

Schmidt, R. H., Jr. 1979. A climatic delineation of the "real" Chihuahuan Desert. Journal of Arid Environments 2:243-250.

Schmidt, R. H., Jr. 1986. Chihuahuan Climate. Pp. 40-63, in Transactions of the Second Symposium on the Resources of the Chihuahuan Desert Region (J. C. Barlow, A. M. Powell, and B. N. Timmermann, eds.). Chihuahuan Desert Research Institute, Alpine, TX.

Sibley, D. A. 2000. The Sibley guide to birds. Alfred A. Knopf, N.Y., 544 pp.

Wilson, D. E., and D. M. Reeder, eds. 2005. Mammal Species of the World: a Taxonomic and Geographic Reference, 3rd ed. Vol. 1 + Vol. 2, 2142 pp. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore.


Last Update: 27 Jun 2006