Who is behind The Zoo Scientist?
Ricardo Lemos de Figueiredo
Founder & Director
I owe a lot to zoos. Growing up, I did not have many opportunities to interact with wildlife and my local zoo (Lisbon) taught me about the beauty of nature and the importance of protecting it. I started my career in that zoo, in 2007, as a volunteer keeper, where I stayed for over three years. However, as I really wanted to go down the zoo research and conservation path, and I had heard about the impressive reputation of British zoos (and BIAZA - the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums), I decided to move to the United Kingdom in 2012, to study a BSc in Animal Behaviour. Graduated in 2015, I have since then completed a Masters by Research (MRes) in Wildlife Behaviour & Conservation at the University of Chester, and a PhD in Animal Behaviour at the University of Birmingham.
I have worked with multiple zoos and other organisations all over the world, in collaborative research projects but also conservation, research, education, and animal care positions. A member of the BIAZA Research Committee since 2016, I also coordinate their Research Engagement Group. I have authored and co-authored scientific papers and chapters for textbooks on zoo research, animal behaviour and welfare, and forest ecology. My main goal is helping zoos reaching (and showcasing) their full potential as conservation, research and education institutions, while continuously improving animal welfare standards. For more information on my professional background, have a look at my Linkedin & Research Gate pages.
"The Zoo Scientist" was created in September 2015, first as a Facebook page, under the name "International Zoo News". The idea was to share news and information on the role of modern zoos in conservation, research and education. As this page always tried to focus as much as possible on the scientific side of zoos, the name was changed upon the creation of the website and twitter account.
The Zoo Scientist is 100% not-for-profit and it is for everyone! Zoos, zoo professionals, students and scientists of all areas are welcome, and so are general public and wildlife/animal enthusiasts. We aim to provide you with reliable, useful and educational material.
We want this page to turn into one of your main sources of information for world-wide Zoo Science.
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BSc, MRes, PhD