Conservation & Research

Dartmoor Zoo has a small but active Conservation and Research department covering a variety of research themes.

We have strong links with several universities and other higher education institutions which enable us to conduct research into cognition, behaviour, conservation and animal welfare. We are also creating projects which examine aspects of the social sciences, including visitor attitudes which measure the effectiveness of our education and science communications activities.

Our dedicated in-house research team composed of staff and Academic Placement students create, undertake and review research programmes throughout the year. The open door policy in place within the department has played a significant role in the huge increase in the number of research projects undertaken annually.

2013 marked the beginning of the first in situ conservation project for Dartmoor zoo. The project involves tracking Iberian wolves in Portugal to monitor population dynamics and to observe the predator-prey relations. This has been, and continues to be, a massive success with several students becoming involved with the studies. Projects such as this one has led to Dartmoor zoo becoming respected within the academic community.

Learn more about Dartmoor Zoo's research themes and projects.


Student Projects

Since 2011, the zoo has conducted its research on an ‘Open Door’ policy, meaning its in-house scientists and external students can design research studies based on their own preference and interests (assuming those students are ethical and do not impact the animals’ welfare). This has lead to a massive boost in the number of projects the zoo conducts.

If you are a student and wish to conduct all or part of your research at Dartmoor Zoo, please contact the Head of the Dartmoor Institute of Animal Science, Adam Cook at with details of what you wish to do.