Christoph Schwitzer


Bristol Zoological Society

Poste occupé:
Chief Zoological Officer


Dr Christoph Schwitzer has been Chief Zoological Officer and Deputy Chief Executive of the Bristol Zoological Society (BZS) since August 2018, with Executive Board responsibility for BZS’s two animal collections at Bristol Zoo Gardens and the Wild Place Project, as well as its veterinary services, its Institute of Conservation Science and Learning (including the Learning, and Field Conservation and Science departments), its public programming, and for Wild Place Project’s general daily operations. Prior to this he was BZS’s Director of Conservation for four years (2014–2018) and Head of Research for eight years (2006–2014). Before coming to Bristol, Christoph worked as part of the primatological research group at Cologne Zoo, Germany, and spent two years in Madagascar building a field station and heading a lemur research and conservation programme. Christoph gained his PhD in Zoology from the University of Cologne in 2003 and has been a Visiting Professor at the University of the West of England since 2013. He is the Deputy Chair and Red List Authority Coordinator of the IUCN Primate Specialist Group. He was a Vice President of the International Primatological Society between 2012 and 2016 and is currently the Vice President of the Association Européenne pour l’Etude et la Conservation des Lémuriens, a consortium of European zoos dedicated to lemur conservation. He is a trustee of the Natural History Consortium, serves on the Council of BIAZA and is a member of the EAZA Research Committee and the EAZA Prosimian TAG, and adviser to the EAZA Callitrichidae TAG.

Schwitzer C, Mittermeier RA, Johnson SE, Donati G, Irwin M, Peacock H, Ratsimbazafy J, Razafindramanana J, Louis Jr. EE, Chikhi L, Colquhoun IC, Tinsman J, Dolch R, LaFleur M, Nash S, Patel E, Randrianambinina B, Rasolofoharivelo T, Wright PC. 2014. Averting lemur extinctions amidst Madagascar’s political crisis. Science343: 842-843.

Schwitzer C, Mittermeier RA, Davies N, Johnson S, Ratsimbazafy J, Razafindramanana J, Louis Jr. EE, Rajaobelina S (eds). 2013. Lemurs of Madagascar: A Strategy for Their Conservation 2013–2016. Bristol, UK: IUCN SSC Primate Specialist Group, Bristol Conservation and Science Foundation, and Conservation International. 185 pp.

Seiler M, Schwitzer C, Gamba M, Holderied MW. 2013. Interspecific semantic alarm call recognition in the solitary Sahamalaza sportive lemur, Lepilemur sahamalazensis.PLoS One8(6): e67397. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0067397

Rode EJ, Nekaris KAI, Markolf M, Schliehe-Diecks S, Seiler M, Radespiel U, Schwitzer C. 2013. Social organisation of the northern giant mouse lemur Mirza zazain Sahamalaza, northwestern Madagascar, inferred from nest group composition and genetic relatedness. Contrib Zool82: 71–83.

Byers O, Lees C, Wilcken J, Schwitzer C. 2013. The One Plan Approach: The philosophy and implementation of CBSG’s approach to integrated species conservation planning. WAZA Magazine14: 2-5.

Schwitzer N, Clough D, Zahner H, Kaumanns W, Kappeler P, Schwitzer C. 2010. Parasite prevalence in blue-eyed black lemurs (Eulemur flavifrons) in differently degraded forest fragments. Endang Species Res12: 215-225.

Schwitzer C. 2009. Gastrointestinal morphology of the crowned lemur (Eulemur coronatus). Anat Hist Embryol38: 429-431.

Schwitzer C, Kaumanns W. 2009. Litter size, infant mortality and female body weight in captive black-and-white ruffed lemurs Varecia variegataEndang Species Res8: 201-209.

Schwitzer C, Brandt S, Ramilijaona O, Rakotomalala Razanahoera M, Ackermand D, Razakamanana T, Ganzhorn JU. 2006. Proceedings of the German-Malagasy Research Cooperation in Life and Earth Sciences. Berlin: Concept Verlag. 233 p.