News Release
Contact: Sondra Katzen, Public Relations, 708.688.8351,
October 5, 2021
 NOTE: Download images at end of press release.

Brookfield Zoo Featuring Virtual Fall Lecture Series

Brookfield, Ill. — This fall, Brookfield Zoo is offering a virtual lecture series featuring an array of fascinating topics about its animals, conservation programs, and even a behind-the-scenes look at the veterinary care the zoo’s animals receive. The best part for those interested in attending, is they can do so from the comfort of their own homes. Following each presentation, there will be time for a question and answer session. Lectures, which begin at 7:00 p.m. CT, are free, although a $10 donation is appreciated. Online reservations are required and can be made at Lectures include:
Caring for Whales and Dolphins in Accredited Zoos and Aquariums
October 12, 2021 (Tuesday)
Join Dr. Lisa Lauderdale, animal welfare scientist in the Animal Welfare Research Department for the Chicago Zoological Society, for a discussion on “Caring for Whales and Dolphins in Accredited Zoos and Aquariums.” Monitoring the welfare of cetaceans is a critical component of providing excellent care in a professionally managed institution. Learn how researchers study whale and dolphin welfare and about the recently published findings from the Cetacean Welfare Study—a collaboration among 43 facilities in seven countries. You’ll hear how habitat characteristics, environmental enrichment, and animal training are related to multiple measures of welfare. Dr. Lauderdale also will share how the creation of a new iOS app, which was developed by the Chicago Zoological Society, is a valuable resource that places important health and welfare information into the hands of cetacean care givers and managers like never before.
Halloween Animals: Bats, Wolves, and Creepy Crawlies
October 27, 2021 (Wednesday)
Just in time for Halloween—learn fascinating facts and fiction behind some of Brookfield Zoo’s resident animals that are associated with the fall holiday. Why do wolves howl at the moon? What does spotting a spider on October 31st mean? Andre Copeland, interpretative programs manager for the Chicago Zoological Society, will take you on a journey exploring these animals’ connections to folklore and the idea that their long-term attachment to cultural beliefs may provide people with a sense of place. With 27 years’ experience, Copeland will share his passion of creating a bridge for people to connect with nature, especially with creatures of the night.
Between the Guano and the Sea: Exploring Punta San Juan, Peru
November 2, 2021 (Tuesday)
The Punta San Juan Program, founded in the late 1970s, is a Peruvian based marine conservation initiative focused on one of the world’s most productive marine ecosystems. A team of on-site biologists and researchers work in collaboration with others around the globe to understand the ecology, behavior, and threats of resident marine species like Humboldt penguins, guanay cormorants, South American sea lions, and Peruvian fur seals. Since 2007, Chicago Zoological Society staff has been involved with this program by conducting field research and health assessments on the region’s wildlife, facilitating community engagement, and helping build local capacity for marine management and conservation. Join Susana C├írdenas Alayza, director of the program, as she shares long-term lessons learned over the years and the challenges of counting animals, understanding food sources, and coordinating sustainable guano harvests that will keep these charismatic animals protected for generations to come.
Tails from the Front: The Extraordinary Veterinary Care of the Brookfield Zoo
November 16 (Tuesday)
Dr. Mike Adkesson, vice president of clinical medicine for the Chicago Zoological Society, oversees the veterinary team, hospital operations, and medical care of Brookfield Zoo’s animals. Join him for an enlightening presentation as he shares his knowledge and stories about several well-known and challenging medical cases. Whether it is a CT scan and sinus surgery for Layla, a black rhinoceros; a total hip replacement surgery on Malena, an aging Amur tiger; or cataract surgery on a California sea lion, the veterinary team at Brookfield Zoo is pushing the boundaries of zoological medicine.   

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Photo Captions--credit: CZS-Brookfield Zoo
8960: Learn about caring for dolphins and whales during a virtual fall lecture on October 12. During the informative discussion, Dr. Lisa Lauderdale, animal welfare scientist for the Chicago Zoological Society, will share recent findings from the Cetacean Welfare Study.

1434: Why do wolves howl at the moon? Find out on October 27 from Andre Copeland, interpretive programs manager for the Chicago Zoological Society, during a Halloween-themed lecture about animals associated with the fall event.
1090: Learn about charismatic animals, including the Humboldt penguin, as well as conservation efforts to protect them and other wildlife. Dr. Susana Cárdenas Alayza, director of the Punta San Juan Program, in Peru, South America, will share her experiences about a marine conservation initiative focused on one of the world's most productive marine ecosystems.

6303: Dr. Mike Adkesson, vice president of clinical medicine for the Chicago Zoological Society, will share his knowledge and stories about caring for the animals at Brookfield Zoo during a lecture on November 16.

About the Chicago Zoological Society
The mission of the Chicago Zoological Society is to inspire conservation leadership by engaging people and communities with wildlife and nature. The Chicago Zoological Society is a private nonprofit organization that operates Brookfield Zoo on land owned by the Forest Preserves of Cook County. The Society is known throughout the world for its international role in animal population management and wildlife conservation. Its Center for the Science of Animal Care and Welfare is at the forefront of animal care that strives to discover and implement innovative approaches to zoo animal management. Brookfield Zoo is the first zoo in the world to be awarded the Humane Certified™ certification mark for the care and welfare of its animals, meeting American Humane Association’s rigorous certification standards. The zoo is located at 8400 31st Street in Brookfield, Illinois, between the Stevenson (I-55) and Eisenhower (I-290) expressways and also is accessible via the Tri-State Tollway (I-294), Metra commuter line, and CTA and PACE bus service. For further information, visit


Sondra Katzen
Media Relations Manager
Office: 708-688-8351
Cell Phone: 708-903-2071


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