Cincinnati Zoo’s Barrows conservation lecture series moves to campus

Field biologist George Schaller kicks off series on Thursday with talk on conservation in Tibet | March 2, 2003

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The Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden has moved its Barrows conservation lecture series to the Cintas Center. The series, which is in its 10th year, brings in world-renowned speakers to share their true-life struggles and adventures in their work to save wildlife and wild places. This year's speakers are: Thursday, March 6 George Schaller, speaking on Conservation in Tibet: Of Snow Leopards and Tibetan Antelope. Thought of as the greatest field biologist of the 20th century, Schaller has spent nearly a half-century studying animals and working to protect the world's wildlife. Vice-president of science and exploration for the Wildlife Conservation Society, Schaller's career began in 1956 where he joined a survey expedition to the Brooks Range in Alaska which led to the creation of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Then, his two-year behavioral and ecological studies of mountain gorillas in Rwanda became the basis to one of his books, The Year of the Gorilla. For the past decade, Schaller has studied wildlife primarily in Mongolia, Laos and the Tibetan Plateau of China. While working with the Chinese government on many conservation initiatives, including one for the giant panda, he was instrumental in the establishment of the Chang Tang Reserve in China and Tibet. The preserve equals Germany in its size. Schaller is being presented with the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden's 2003 wildlife conservation award. Wednesday, April 2 Michael Fay, speaking on Megatransect: 1,200 Miles Through Africa's Congo Basin. Field scientist for National Geographic Society and Wildlife Conservation Society, Fay walked for 16 months covering 1,200 miles through central Africa to record the diversity of plants and animals in the forest. This incredible trek, now known as the Megatransect, was the opportunity to show the outside world the importance of preserving the Congo forest. Fay encountered elephants and gorillas that had never seen humans and took extensive notes on sightings of leopard tracks and chimpanzee nests. Recent negotiations spearheaded by Fay have led to the United States and other developed countries committing millions of dollars to save the integrity of the Congo forest. Inspired by Fay's findings, Gabon's President El Hadj Omar Bongo declared at the 2002 world summit on sustainable development that his country will set aside more than 10,000 square miles of land for a national park system. Fay's work has been featured in National Geographic magazine and several TV specials. Thursday, May 1 Dr. William Karesh, speaking on A Healthy Planet-Wildlife Vets In Action Imagine traveling the world to provide veterinary care to wildlife ranging from macaws to elephants. Karesh developed and directs the international field veterinary program for the Wildlife Conservation Society, a one-of-a-kind program that provides veterinary assistance to conservation projects. From saving the life of a wounded okapi to collecting DNA samples from endangered orangutans in Borneo, Karesh cares for and protects animals in some of the most exotic and remote corners of the world. His adventures have taken him to Bolivia to track down elusive white-lipped peccaries, to the coast of Peru to make house calls to seal pups and to the forests of Cameroon to radio-tag elephants. His true-life adventure stories are filled with tales of wildlife and people, culture and politics. Author of the widely acclaimed Appointment at the Ends of the World: Memoirs of a Wildlife Veterinarian, Karesh has been featured on numerous television and radio shows. Thursday, May 22 David Quammen, speaking on Man-Eating Predators and the Food-Chain of Power and Glory. Quammen, a Cincinnati native, is an internationally acclaimed author and has recently completed Monster of God. His book explores the power and prowess of the largest predators on Earth and questions the whys and hows of whether any wild populations of lions, crocodiles, tigers and bears will still exist on this planet in 100 years. Quammen's lecture, based on his new book, offers the audience insight into the world of the large predator along with a mix of travel narrative, humor and intrigue. Quammen is regularly featured in Outside magazine. He has received the national magazine award two times and the academy award in literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters for his book, Song of the Dodo. He is also published in National Geographic magazine, Harper's, Rolling Stone and The New York Times Book Review. Lectures begin at 7:30 pm at the Cintas Center's Schiff Family Conference Center. Ticket prices are $8 students/zoo volunteers; $10 zoo members; $12 general public. Tickets can be purchased in person at the Cintas Center ticket office.