Research Mission Statement
The mission statement of the Fort Worth Zoo was approved in 1999 by the Executive Committee and Board of the Fort Worth Zoological Association.
The mission of the Fort Worth Zoo is to strengthen the bond between humans and the environment by promoting responsible stewardship of wildlife and ensuring diverse, high-quality educational and entertaining family experiences through effective and efficient management of its resources.
In keeping with the overall mission statement of the Fort Worth Zoological Park, the Zoo’s conservation research mission statement is as follows:
The Fort Worth Zoo will encourage, conduct and support conservation research projects for the betterment of animal life and ecosystems both in captivity and the wild.
To accomplish this mission, the following operational goals have been established:
- Conservation research will focus on rare and endangered species, as well as the preservation of habitat and ecosystems and the development of scientific husbandry management practices.
- The Fort Worth Zoo will encourage and support the involvement of staff, universities, residents, interns and students in conservation research projects.
- Fort Worth Zoo staff will endeavor to conduct conservation research projects in cooperation with American Zoo and Aquarium Association (AZA) and international conservation organizations.
- Fort Worth Zoo Research Guidelines and Research Request Form:
Arthur A. Seeligson Jr. Conservation Fund
The Fort Worth Zoo administers the Arthur A. Seeligson Jr. Conservation Fund (SCF). This fund supports the conservation of native Texas wildlife through grant awards that promote partnerships among scientists, educators, organizations and private landowners committed to conserving the biodiversity of Texas. In 2013, the SCF awarded a grant to an outstanding conservation project that will investigate habitat use, home range size and nest success of the threatened Texas horned lizard under different habitat management regimes. This project will help to establish management practices that best support Texas horned lizard conservation.
Projects supported in the past have included:
- Using trained search dogs to locate Houston toads in their natural habitat to monitor populations and habitat preferences of the endangered toad
- Habitat enhancement for northern bobwhite through progressive management techniques
- Investigation of habitat use and preference of eastern and western box turtles in an urban environment
- Assessment of ornate box turtle population genetics as a proactive conservation approach
- Effects of introduced grasses on native Texas grassland birds
- Captive breeding and monitoring of wild populations of endangered Houston toad
- Researching foraging ecology of reddish egret in the Laguna Madre of Texas
- Installation of artificial nest cavities for red-cockaded woodpecker
- Construction of a pre-release facility for re-introducing Attwater’s prairie chicken
- Installation of artificial roosts for Rafinesque’s big-eared bat
- Development of a conservation strategy for alligator snapping turtle and nest protection for sea turtles
To date, the SCF has awarded more than $63,000 to support wildlife conservation projects in Texas. Please check back in 2014 for information about the next request for proposals.