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Biographical entry Wheeler, Wilson Roy (Roy) (1905 - 1988)

6 November 1905
Coleraine, Victoria, Australia
25 September 1988


Roy Wheeler was a postman and keen amateur ornithologist. He was particularly interested in the distribution of birds and this interest led to the publication of his Handlist of the Birds of Victoria. He was active in the cause of conservation of birds and their habitat.


Born Coleraine, Victoria, 6 November 1905. Died 25 September 1988. MBE 1969. Educated Coleraine High School. Joined Postmaster-General's Department 1921 and remained there all his working life. Australian Natural History Medallion 1965; Honorary Member, South Australian Ornithological Association 1970; Fellow, Royal Australasian Ornithologists' Union 1971. President, Bird Observers' Club 1951-53, secretary 1953-at least 1969; President, Royal Australasian Ornithologists' Union 1964-65. From 1950 Convener, Altona Survey Group (Victorian Ornithological Research Group from 1962), whose work on the Silver Gull formed one of the earliest banding studies in Australia. Joint editor, World Bird Day Bird Lists 1951-54, editor 1955-60; sometime chairman, International Council of Bird Preservation. Council member, Gould League from 1950, judging many of their competitions and helping in the preparation of film strips shown to thousands of school children. Conducted adult education classes at Mount Beauty. Joined the CSIRO bird-banding scheme for Australia 1953, publishing A Handlist of the Birds of Victoria in 1967.

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Published resources

Journal Articles

  • Wheeler, W. R., 'Obituaries: Gordon Binns', Emu, 77 (2) (1977), 89. Details


See also

  • Robin, Libby, The Flight of the Emu: a Hundred Years of Australian Ornithology 1901-2001 (Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, 2001), 492 pp. Details

Rosanne Walker