Local and Global Conservation Overview

Worldwide Conservation Efforts

This map depicts conservation projects in which the Zoo is involved worldwide.

These initiatives include:

•African Aquatic Conservation Fund - Western Africa
•Alaska SeaLife Center - USA (Alaska), Arctic
•Aquaculture and Public Aquariums: Self-Sustaining Collections - USA (National)
•Bioenergetics of Big Cats - USA, Kenya
•Cheetah Conservation Botswana – Botswana
•Cheetah Conservation Fund/Cheetah Conservation – Namibia
•Cheetah Conservation Fund: Livestock Guarding Dog Program – Namibia
•Cheetah Conservation Project Zimbabwe – Zimbabwe
•Conservation Legacy Award - USA, International
•Coral Conservation - USA, International
•DNA Profile of African Painted Dogs in the North American SSP Population - USA, Africa
•Elephant Physiology: Understanding the largest terrestrial species  - USA, Africa
•Endangered Wildlife Trust - South Africa
•Hellbender Conservation - USA (Pennsylvania, Missouri)
•International Elephant Foundation - International
•International Rhino Foundation - International
•Louisiana Pine Snake Genetics – USA
•Manatee Rescue and Rehabilitation Partnership - USA (Florida, Ohio)
•Monarch Watch – USA
•Northeast Stranding Network – USA
•Painted Dog Conservation - Zimbabwe, Africa
•Polar Bears International - Canada
•Polar Bear Physiology: Race to save a species - USA, Canada
•Project Frozen Dumbo: Race to save a species - USA, South Africa
•Red Panda Network - Nepal, Asia
•Rescue and Rehabilitation Programs - USA, Africa
•Sea Lion Physiology - USA (National)
•Sea to Shore Alliance - USA, Belize, Cuba
•Sea Turtle Second Chance Program - USA (Atlantic Ocean, North Carolina, Pittsburgh)
•SECORE - Curacao, Guam, Mexico
•Turtle Survival Alliance - India, International
•Victoria Falls Wildlife Trust - Zimbabwe

Research at the Zoo

Please note at this time, the Pittsburgh Zoo is not accepting applications for research.
The Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium considers research projects involving basic or applied science. All such projects are considered, but sometimes resources are a limiting factor. In such times, we use the following priorities (from highest to lowest) to rank projects:
• Greatest conservation impact;
• For onsite projects, most local involvement, preferably with the locals in decision-making positions rather than support or aid positions;
• Staff growth possibilities (for example, projects initiated by or involving keepers or other staff); and
• Projects involving animals in our collection.

Zoo staff or outside scientists may initiate projects or conduct research at the Zoo. Please note that while we encourage our keeper staff to be decision-makers in research projects, they must still be able to complete their normal duties without disruption. Qualified investigators, including graduate students who have projects that would be appropriate to conduct at the Zoo, can contact us to request application information. If approved on scientific and conservation merit, our Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) will review proposals that involve more than normal husbandry procedures to ensure that our subject animals are treated ethically.

Why Conduct Research at the Zoo?

Zoos have evolved from recreational facilities into conservation organizations. Almost every aspect of the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium has changed.
Old-fashioned zoos
•Animals housed alone in barren cages
•Focus on ease for visitors (short walking distances, many different types of animals)
•Animals captured from the wild
•Experience unpleasant for the animals
Modern zoos
•Animals live in normal social groups and natural settings
•Focus on promoting animal welfare and conservation
•Animals bred at the Zoo
•Experience better for the animals

Research is essential to gather the information we need to make good conservation and management decisions. For example, in order to give our animals naturalistic settings, we need to know what their habitat is like in the wild. Our research requires work both at zoos and in the wild.

The Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium embraces this new philosophy and has a vigorous conservation and research program.

Back to main conservation page.