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Yisrael Aharoni

Yisrael Aharoni

The Widze (also known as Vidzy) memorial book (1998) has a short description in Yiddish of his life - and here is a translation of it:
"The first zoologist in the land of Israel, the son of Rabbi Joseph Aharonvitz, born in Widze in 1882. Learned at the Telz yeshiva. Fled to Prague where he got his university education and specialized in zoology.  Immigrated to the Land of Israel [Palestine] in 1902, served as a principal of a school in Rehovot and assisted in the establishment of the first Hebrew kindergarten. Settled in Jerusalem in 1904 where he taught in the Bezalel Art School.
Until his death in 1946, Aharoni devoted his life to the research of the animals of the Land of Israel in their natural habitat.  For this purpose, he conducted many research trips in the land and in neighboring lands and amassed a collection of stuffed animals and birds, many of which no longer exist in Israel.    More than 30 types of different creatures that he discovered which were previously unknown carry his name.   One of his great achievements is the discovery of the hamster for the purpose of biological and medical experiments - something that was later spread to laboratories all over the world.  
Aharoni contributed much to the development of the science of biology - through his pioneering journeys, as a lecturer at the Hebrew University, and as a writer of textbooks particularly the book entitled "The Science of the Living".  He established the first zoological museum in 1925 under the auspices of the World Zionist Organization which was later transferred to the Hebrew University. His two volume autobiographical work  "Memoirs of a Hebrew Zoologist" was widely read, especially by youth.  His collection of stuffed animals is held to this day in a church in the Old City of Jerusalem."     
from another reference article:
Aharoni served as the Turkish army zoologist during World War I and from 1918-1921 he was the zoologist of the British Mandate government. 
Eudice Winer