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a photo of the zoo
Chris Heller for Science Stories

Research at Copenhagen Zoo 1: A cornerstone in the work with animals

Zoos are no longer just a showcase for captive animals. The animals in the zoo are, in effect, a reserve bank for endangered species in the wild, and there is a great deal of work being done to counteract inbreeding and coordinate research and collaboration between zoos and wildlife sanctuaries.

Bengt Holst has worked in the Copenhagen Zoo since he graduated as a biologist in 1983. Since 1994 as Deputy Director and Scientific Director. From 1993-1999, Bengt Holst participated with Joachim Jerrik, Jens Degett and later Jerk Langer in a weekly radio program (Study 2000) on natural sciences on DR-P1. He is perhaps best known for appearing in Danish and foreign media in 2014 to defend the fact that Copenhagen Zoo killed a giraffe, which was autopsied in front of an audience and then eaten by the lions. Bengt Holst has been chairman of the Animal Ethics Council since 2012.

The podcast is the first in a series of interviews (in Danish) with science journalist Jens Degett on zoo research and development.

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Science Stories is supported by the Novo Nordisk Foundation.