Elected: 1964
Discipline: Clinical Sciences
Dr Harold Burnell Carter FRSE
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Harold Burnell Carter died on 27th February 2005. His working life, though centred around a single theme, led him into two successive careers, in animal science and historical scholarship. The theme running through Carter’s life-long work was the Merino sheep as a producer of fine wool. The reason for this interest lay in the fact that Merino fine wool had long provided the backbone of the economy of Australia of which Carter was a native son. Typically over 50% of Australia’s export earnings from the 1830’s to the mid 20th century came from the sale of Merino wool. By the 1930s, as Carter began his work, major influences were about to affect the viability of this economy, including, as the most apparent, the rise of synthetic fibres. To the young veterinary graduate, Harold Carter, there was a clear need for scientific investigation into the biology of wool to sustain its economic value in world markets. To this idea he devoted his life’s work.