During the 20th century, birding evolved from a little-known hobby into a global phenomenon important for ornithology and bird conservation. More recently a similar change has begun for mammalwatching, which is rapidly gaining popularity and is already providing financial support, observational data, diagnostic information, and a volunteer base for mammalogy and mammalian conservation. The study data suggest that mammalwatching has the potential to end decades of neglect of small mammals in dire need of conservation, to improve our knowledge of mammalian status and distribution, and to increase public support for conservation measures, especially for species not seen as particularly charismatic by the general public. Professional mammologists and conservation workers can benefit from this new trend, but they can also help it. We offer a number of suggestions as to how professionals mammalogists and the amateur community can better work together to promote conservation and science.
Key words: Amateur naturalists, biodiversity, citizen science, ecotourism, mammalogy, mammals, volunteering.