Gorilla, Gabon (USNM 197037)

USNM 197037

Gorillas are great apes and one of our closest living relatives. The Smithsonian Institution’s Division of Mammals (http://vertebrates.si.edu/mammals/) houses many gorillas in its scientific collections.

This specimen, USNM 197037 (http://collections.mnh.si.edu/search/mammals/?irn=7266645), is a cranial cast of a syntype of Pseudogorilla ellioti, currently held in the Senckenberg Musuem in Frankfurt, Germany. This nominal taxon (P. ellioti) was classified by Frenchkop in 1943 as the type species of Elliot's generic name Pseudogorilla (P. ellioti Frechkop, originally P. mayema of Elliot; synonym of Gorilla gorilla gorilla, the western lowland gorilla). This individual, a young adult male gorilla, was misinterpreted by Elliot as an adult, who incorrectly regarded Pseudogorilla as a taxon intermediate in size and morphology between chimpanzees and gorillas. The specimen was collected at Fernan Vez, Gabon.

This is a CT scan of the mandible of USNM 197037. These three-dimensional scans are made publicly available through the generous support of the Smithsonian 2.0 Fund, provided from the annual gifts of the Smithsonian National Board to the Secretary to use at his discretion (http://smithsonian20.si.edu/fund.html), and the Smithsonian Collections Care and Preservation Fund.

The main goal of this joint initiative between the Human Origins Program and the Division of Mammals is to make the NMNH's scientific collections of our closest living relatives, the apes, available in 3D for education and research.