11/01/2017

Conservation director receives promotion for primate conservation

Bristol Zoological Society’s conservation director has accepted a significant promotion from the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

Dr. Christoph Schwitzer will become Deputy Chair of the IUCN Species Survival Commission’s Primate Specialist Group. He will also retain his existing roles of Regional Vice-Chair for Madagascar and Red List Authority Coordinator.

As Deputy Chair of the Primate Specialist Group, he will have responsibility not only for Madagascar, but for all primate habitat regions worldwide.

“It is a great honour for me to be appointed Deputy Chair of the IUCN SSC Primate Specialist Group, a role that allows me to continue to play my part in helping to ensure the survival of the world’s most threatened primates”, said Dr. Schwitzer.

Additional responsibilities will involve assisting the Group’s Chair, Dr. Russell Mittermeier, to coordinate the Steering Committee as well as appoint members to the group. Schwitzer will also become more involved with primate conservation issues and concerns in South America, Africa and Asia.

Schwitzer’s previous four year’s work for the IUCN involved assessment workshops in Madagascar, the Americas, Asia and Africa. He has also published the IUCN Lemur Conservation Strategy and a corresponding scientific paper in the journal Science.

Schwitzer has also published the journal ‘Lemur News’ on an annual basis and coordinated and edited the biennial “Primates in Peril” report on the world’s 25 most endangered primates.

Dr. Christoph Schwitzer has worked for Bristol Zoological Society for over 10 years. He leads the Society’s Conservation Directorate, including its field conservation programmes across the world and research programmes both in the field and at Bristol Zoo Gardens and Wild Place Project.