Annie Meinertzhagen

Annie Meinertzhagen (2 June 1889 – 6 July 1928) wis a Scottish ornithologist that made mony observes o British birds; her maist kenspeckle wark wis anent the mouting pattrens in douks an wadin birds.[1] She wis marriet til ornithologist Richard Meinertzhagen in 1921 an wis killt bi a shot frae a pistol in uncannie circumstances.

Annie Constance Jackson

Born2 Juin 1889(1889-06-02)
Swordale, Ross-shire, Scotland
Dee'd6 Julie 1928(1928-07-06) (aged 39)
Swordale, Ross-shire, Scotland
Cause o daith
Gunshot wound
EddicationImperial College London
Hauf-marrae(s)Richard Meinertzhagen
AwairdsHonorary Member of the British Ornithological Union (1915)
Scientific career
Academic advisorsErnest MacBride

Born Annie Constance Jackson, tae Major Randle Jackson an Emily V. Baxter o Swordale, a toun in easter Ross-shire in the Scottish Highlands. Mrs Jackson wis the dochter o Edward Baxter o Kincaldrum, Angus.[2] As a bairn, Annie got intae naitural history, maistly birds. Wi her younger sister Dorothy, who wad be an entomologist, she duin zoology for three years at the Imperial College of Science in London unner Ernest MacBride. In 1915, she furthset a scientific scrieve wi Macbride in the Proceedings of the Royal Society on the heirskip o colour pattrens in the stick insect Carausius morosus.[3]

The feck o her early ornithological wark wis duin at Swordale, in Ross and Cromarty, alangst the friths o Cromarty an Dornoch. She stertit furthsettin wark on the local birdlife in 1909. She wis interestit in bird migration an correspondit wi lichthouse keepers that wad send her specimens o sindle-kent birds. She gaithert the first Scottish Hairst specimens o the yellae-broued warbler an wis the first ornithologist to shaw that the Icelandic race o the reidshank (Tringa totanus robusta) wad tryst in Britain. She wad aften chum her cuisin, Evelyn V. Baxter, whiles she wis makkin ornithological observes.[4]


Richard Meinertzhagen

In March 1921 she wis mairriet til British sodger, spy and ornithologist Colonel Richard Meinertzhagen. She ware't pairt o her hinnie-month daein resairch at Walter Rothschild's ornithological museum at Tring.

Syne she wad mak observes o birds athort the warld, traivellin tae Copenhagen in 1921, tae Egypt an Palestine in 1923, tae Madeira in 1925, an tae India in the winter o 1925–26, whan she keppit wi her man in an expedition tae Sikkim an southren Tibet huntin birds an beasts in the Himalayas. She haed three bairns, Anne (born 1921), Daniel (born 1925) an Randle (born 1928).


Annie Meinertzhagen dee'd at her estate at Swordale on 6 July 1928, no juist three months efter her third bairn wis born,[5] in whit kythed tae be a mishanterin shot frae a gun in whan out wi her man. Richard Meinertzhagen's diary on 1 August 1928 reads:

”I have not written up my story for some weeks not because I have had nothing to say but because my heart has been too full of sorrow my soul too overwhelmed with unhappiness. My darling Annie died on July 6th as a result of a terrible accident at Swordale. We had been practising with my revolver and had just finished when I went to bring back the target. I heard a shot behind me and saw my darling fall with a bullet through her head.”

Furthset WarksEedit

The feck o Annie Meinertzhagen's ornithological observes was anent waders an douks. Unner her maiden name she wrat quairs anent the mouts o British douks an waders[6]. Under her marriet name she gied a wheen o wallie observes tae the scientific journal Ibis, includin reviews o the genus Burhinus in 1924, the subfaimily Scolopacinae in 1926, an the faimily Cursoridae in 1927.[7]


  • 1915 – Honorar Lady Memmer o the British Ornithologists' Union
  • 1919 – Correspondin Memmer o the American Ornithologists' Union

She is gien mense wi the subspecific name o the Antipodes snipe (Coenocorypha aucklandica meinertzhagenae), descrievit bi Walter Rothschild in 1927. The subspecies Anthus cinnamomenus annae an <i id="mwkQ">Ammomanes deserti annae</i> are named efter her forbye.[8]


  1. Witherby, H.F. (1928). "Obituary. Annie Constance Meinertzhagen (nee Jackson)" (PDF). British Birds. 22 (3): 58–60.
  2. "Highland lady shot dead". Dundee Courier. 7 Julie 1928. p. 5 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  3. MacBride, E.W.; Jackson, A. (1915). "The Inheritance of Colour in the Stick-Insect, Carausius Morosus". Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. Series B. 89 (611): 109–118. doi:10.1098/rspb.1915.0034. JSTOR 80684.
  4. Baxter, Evelyn (1908). "Bird notes from the Isle of May for the Year 1908". Annals of Scottish Natural History. 18: 5.
  5. "Highland lady shot dead". Dundee Courier. 7 Julie 1928. p. 5 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  6. Jackson, Annie C. (1915). "Notes on the moults and sequences of plumages in some British Ducks" (PDF). British Birds. 9 (2): 34–42.
  7. Jackson, Annie C. (1919). "The moults and sequences of plumages of the British Waders. Part 8" (PDF). British Birds. 12 (5): 104–113.
  8. Beolens, Bo; Watkins, Michael; Grayson, Michael (1 October 2014). The Eponym Dictionary of Birds (in English). Bloomsbury Publishing. ISBN 9781472905741.CS1 maint: unrecognised leid (link)