List of Famous Naturalists People

List of Famous Naturalists

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This list of famous naturalists and naturalism authors includes photos, bios, and other information, when available. Who are the top naturalists in the world? This includes the most prominent naturalists, living and dead, both from America and abroad. This list of notable naturalists is ordered by their level of prominence, and can be sorted for various bits of information, such as where these historic naturalists were born and what their nationality is. The famous naturalist writers on this list are from different countries, but what they all have in common is that they're all renowned naturalists.

Whether you're looking for American naturalists, that British naturalist whose name you can't quite remember, or female naturalists who have left their mark, this list is sure to help. Among the naturalist people, authors, writers, and thinkers on this list are Charles Darwin and Steve Irwin.

From reputable, prominent, and well known naturalists to the lesser known naturalists of today, these are some of the best professionals in field of naturalism and nature writing. Who are the most famous naturalists ever? What are the names of famous naturalists? The list below has all the great naturalists, who have influenced the way humans interact with and relate to the natural world around us all.

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  1. 1
    Charles Darwin
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    Charles Robert Darwin, FRS was an English naturalist and geologist, best known for his contributions to evolutionary theory. He established that all species of life have descended over time from common ancestors, and in a joint publication with Alfred Russel Wallace introduced his scientific theory that ...more

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    • Age: Died at 73 (1809-1882)
    • Birthplace: The Mount, Shrewsbury, United Kingdom
    • Profession: Biologist, Scientist, Naturalist, Geologist, Writer
  2. 2

    Stephen Robert "Steve" Irwin, nicknamed "The Crocodile Hunter", was an Australian wildlife expert, television personality, and conservationist. Irwin achieved worldwide fame from the television series The Crocodile Hunter, an internationally broadcast wildlife documentary series which he co-hosted with ...more

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    • Age: Died at 44 (1962-2006)
    • Birthplace: Essendon, Melbourne, Australia
    • Profession: Conservationist, Actor, Zoologist, Voice acting, Naturalist, + more
  3. 3

    Sir David Frederick Attenborough OM CH CVO CBE FRS FZS FSA is an English broadcaster and naturalist. He is best known for writing and presenting the nine Life series, in conjunction with the BBC Natural History Unit, which collectively form a comprehensive survey of animal and plant life on the planet.more

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    • Age: age 89
    • Birthplace: Isleworth, London, United Kingdom
    • Profession: Environmentalist, Television producer, Screenwriter, Actor, Naturalist, + more
  4. 4
    Steve Backshall
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    Stephen James "Steve" Backshall is a BAFTA-winning English naturalist, writer and television presenter, best known for BBC TV's Deadly 60. His other BBC work includes being part of the expedition teams in Lost Land of the Tiger, Lost Land of the Volcano and Lost Land of the Jaguar, and he has worked for ...more

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    • Age: age 42
    • Birthplace: Surrey, United Kingdom
    • Profession: Television producer, Actor, Naturalist, Writer, Presenter
  5. 5
    Alexander von Humboldt
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    Friedrich Wilhelm Heinrich Alexander von Humboldt was a Prussian geographer, naturalist, and explorer, and the younger brother of the Prussian minister, philosopher and linguist Wilhelm von Humboldt. Humboldt's quantitative work on botanical geography laid the foundation for the field of biogeography.more

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    • Age: Died at 90 (1769-1859)
    • Birthplace: Berlin, Germany
    • Profession: Scientist, Naturalist, Mountaineer, Explorer
  6. 6
    E. O. Wilson
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    Edward Osborne "E. O." Wilson FMLS is an American biologist, researcher, theorist, naturalist and author. His biological specialty is myrmecology, the study of ants, on which he is considered to be the world's leading expert. Wilson is known for his scientific career, his role as "the father of ...more

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    • Age: age 86
    • Birthplace: Birmingham, Alabama, United States of America
    • Profession: Biologist, Professor, Researcher, Conservationist, Scientist, + more
  7. 7
    David M. Carroll
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    David M. Carroll is an American naturalist, author and illustrator. He has investigated for the endangered species programs of New Hampshire, Vermont, Maine, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the National Park Service. He lives in Warner, New Hampshire and is among the greatest wiffleball ...more

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    • Age: age 73
    • Profession: Illustrator, Author, Naturalist
  8. 8
    John James Audubon
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    John James Audubon, born Jean-Jacques Audubon, was an American ornithologist, naturalist, and painter. He was notable for his expansive studies to document all types of American birds and for his detailed illustrations that depicted the birds in their natural habitats. His major work, a color-plate book ...more

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    • Age: Died at 66 (1785-1851)
    • Birthplace: Les Cayes, Haiti
    • Profession: Painter, Ornithologist, Naturalist
  9. 9
    Terri Irwin
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    Terri Irwin, AM is an American-Australian,naturalist and author, the widow of Australian naturalist Steve Irwin and owner of Australia Zoo at Beerwah, Queensland, Australia. She co-starred with her husband on The Crocodile Hunter, their unconventional television nature documentary series along with its ...more

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    • Age: age 51
    • Birthplace: Oregon, USA, Eugene
    • Profession: Conservationist, Author, Zoologist, Naturalist, Presenter
  10. 10

    Peter Duff Hart-Davis is a biographer, naturalist and journalist and the son of Peggy Ashcroft.more

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    • Age: age 79
    • Profession: Journalist, Biographer, Naturalist
  11. 11
    Georges Cuvier
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    Jean Léopold Nicolas Frédéric Cuvier, known as Georges Cuvier, was a French naturalist and zoologist. Cuvier was a major figure in natural sciences research in the early 19th century and was instrumental in establishing the fields of comparative anatomy and paleontology through his work in comparing ...more

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    • Age: Died at 63 (1769-1832)
    • Birthplace: Montbéliard, France
    • Profession: Zoologist, Naturalist
  12. 12
    Maria Sibylla Merian
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    Maria Sibylla Merian was a German-born naturalist and scientific illustrator, a descendant of the Frankfurt branch of the Swiss Merian family, founders of one of Europe's largest publishing houses in the 17th century. Merian received her artistic training from her stepfather, Jacob Marrel, a student of ...more

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    • Age: Died at 70 (1647-1717)
    • Birthplace: Frankfurt, Germany
    • Profession: Illustrator, Entomologist, Naturalist, Artist
  13. 13
    Edward J. Laurent
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    Ed Laurent is a Spatial Ecologist who develops and delivers collaborative, science-based recommendations and tools that enable the implementation and evaluation of conservation activities. His specialties and expertise include geographic information systems, analysis of remotely sensed imagery, database ...more

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    • Profession: Database manager, Editor, Earth remote sensing, Scientist, Animal trainer, + more
  14. 14
    Alfred Russel Wallace
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    Alfred Russel Wallace OM FRS was a British naturalist, explorer, geographer, anthropologist, and biologist. He is best known for independently conceiving the theory of evolution through natural selection; his paper on the subject was jointly published with some of Charles Darwin's writings in 1858. This ...more

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    • Age: Died at 90 (1823-1913)
    • Birthplace: Llanbadoc, United Kingdom
    • Profession: Evolutionary Biologist, Biologist, Anthropologist, Scientist, Geographer, + more
  15. 15
    DeWitt Clinton
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    DeWitt Clinton was an early American politician and naturalist who served as a United States Senator and was the sixth governor of New York. In this last capacity, he was largely responsible for the construction of the Erie Canal. Clinton was the leader of New York's People’s Party and was a major rival ...more

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    • Age: Died at 59 (1769-1828)
    • Birthplace: Little Britain, New York, United States of America
    • Profession: Politician, Naturalist
  16. 16

    Kim Williams

    Kim Williams was an American naturalist, writer, and the longest-ever running guest commenter on NPR where she was a guest commentator on the radio show All Things Considered for over ten and a half years.more

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    • Age: Died at 63 (1923-1986)
    • Birthplace: Hudson, New York, United States of America
    • Profession: Commentator, Author, Naturalist
  17. 17
    Minakata Kumagusu
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    Minakata Kumagusu was a Japanese author and naturalist.more

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    • Age: Died at 74 (1867-1941)
    • Birthplace: Wakayama, Japan
    • Profession: Naturalist, Writer
  18. 18
    Florentino Ameghino
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    Florentino Ameghino was an Argentine naturalist, paleontologist, anthropologist and zoologist, whose fossil discoveries on the Argentine Pampas, especially on Patagonia, rank with those made in the western United States during the late 19th century. Along with his two brothers –Carlos and Juan– ...more

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    • Age: Died at 57 (1854-1911)
    • Birthplace: Luján, Argentina
    • Profession: Paleontologist, Anthropologist, Scientist, Zoologist, Naturalist
  19. 19
    Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon
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    Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon was a French naturalist, mathematician, cosmologist, and encyclopedic author. His works influenced the next two generations of naturalists, including Jean-Baptiste Lamarck and Georges Cuvier. Buffon published thirty-six quarto volumes of his Histoire Naturelle ...more

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    • Age: Died at 81 (1707-1788)
    • Birthplace: Montbard, France
    • Profession: Mathematician, Biologist, Naturalist, Science writer, Astronomer
  20. 20
    Chris Packham
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    Christopher Gary "Chris" Packham is an English naturalist, nature photographer, television presenter and author, best known for his television work including the children's nature series The Really Wild Show in the late 1980s. He has presented the BBC nature series Springwatch since 2009.more

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    • Age: age 54
    • Birthplace: Southampton, United Kingdom
    • Profession: Cinematographer, Nature Photographer, Naturalist, Writer, Presenter
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