Zoologists

Zoologists study the structure, physiology, development and classification of animals. They also study the habitats and ecology of animals. Zoology as a branch of life sciences involves work with animals, either in natural surroundings or in captivity. Because of the vastness of the animal kingdom, some zoologists specialize in one of the various branches that fall under this category. They may also choose to focus on whole organisms or parts of an organism. Zoologists conduct analytical and experimental research. They work in the field observing animals and their habitats and collect samples for analysis. They may have to work long irregular hours in remote areas and harsh climatic conditions. The samples collected by field work are examined in laboratories using specialized techniques. High technology software and computer simulations and models are used to analyze the laboratory results. Zoologists help in improving livestock, and facilitate development of new drugs for veterinary usage. Their work is invaluable in the field of animal welfare and conservation of endangered species and habitats. They are employed by the government to aid in developing policies and laws related to animals, both wild and domestic. They also serve in teaching positions in universities and undertake research. Read on to learn about the life and works of various famous zoologists from all over the world.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 
Jane Goodall
(Primatologist)

Jane Goodall
4
Birthdate: April 3, 1934
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Hampstead, London, England

Jane Goodall is an English anthropologist and primatologist. Goodall's research proved that chimpanzees could use tools like stalks of grass to fish out termites from termite holes; this also challenged the long-held belief that chimpanzees were vegetarians. Goodall also discovered that chimpanzees are capable of emotions like sorrow and joy. Goodall is also credited with founding the Jane Goodall Institute.

 2 
Dian Fossey
(Zoologist, Conservationist)

Dian Fossey
10
Birthdate: January 16, 1932
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: San Francisco, California, United States
Died: December 26, 1985
Zoologist, primatologist, and conservationist Dian Fossey conducted research on mountain gorillas in Rwanda from 1966 until she was murdered in 1985. She was part of the Trimates assigned to study apes by paleoanthropologist Louis Leakey. She wrote Gorillas in the Mist, which was later turned into a film.

 3 
James Watson
(Molecular Biologist Who Co-discovered the Double Helix Structure of DNA With Francis Crick)

James Watson
6
Birthdate: April 6, 1928
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States

James Watson is a geneticist, molecular biologist, and zoologist. He is credited with co-authoring the academic paper that propounded the double helix structure of nucleic acids such as DNA for which he was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1962. In 1977, he was honored with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. In 1997, he was awarded the National Medal of Science.

 4 
Fridtjof Nansen
(Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and the First High Commissioner for Refugees Appointed by the League of Nations)

Fridtjof Nansen
6
Birthdate: October 10, 1861
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Oslo, Norway
Died: May 13, 1930

Fridtjof Nansen was a Norwegian polymath who won the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize in 1922 for his post-war efforts after the First World War. A well-known explorer, humanitarian, and diplomat, Nansen achieved international fame for his attempt to reach the geographical North Pole during his Fram expedition. His techniques and innovations influenced a generation of succeeding Antarctic and Arctic expeditions.

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 5 
Ernst Haeckel
(Zoologist & Evolutionist Who Was a Strong Proponent of 'Darwinism')

Ernst Haeckel
6
Birthdate: February 16, 1834
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Potsdam, Germany
Died: August 9, 1919

Ernst Haeckel had initially practiced medicine before he gained an interest in Charles Darwin’s theory and began exploring zoology and related fields. He not only coined terms such as ecology, but also named numerous species and created a genealogical tree. He drew numerous figures of animals and sea creatures, too.

 6 
David Suzuki
(Academic, Enviromental Activist)

David Suzuki
8
Birthdate: March 24, 1936
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Vancouver, Canada
Best known for the CBC show The Nature of Things, Canadian environmental activist David Suzuki has also been a genetics and zoology professor. The UN Environment Programme Medal winner has been a major force against global warming and has written several books, such as An Introduction to Genetic Analysis.
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 7 
Georges Cuvier
(Naturalist)

Georges Cuvier
4
Birthdate: August 23, 1769
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Montbéliard, France
Died: May 13, 1832

Georges Cuvier was a French zoologist and naturalist. A major figure in the early 19th century's research of natural sciences, Cuvier played an important role in establishing the fields of comparative paleontology and anatomy by comparing fossils with living animals, for which he is sometimes regarded as the founding father of paleontology.

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 8 
Konrad Lorenz
(Zoologist)

Konrad Lorenz
6
Birthdate: November 7, 1903
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: February 27, 1989

Nobel Prize-winning Austrian zoologist Konrad Lorenz is remembered as a pioneer of ethology. The son of a surgeon father and a physician mother, Lorenz was a qualified physician himself. A university degree awarded to him was rescinded posthumously due to his association with the Nazi party

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James Robertson Justice
6
Birthdate: June 15, 1907
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Lewisham, England
Died: July 2, 1975

 10 
Thomas Hunt Morgan
(Geneticist)

Thomas Hunt Morgan
4
Birthdate: September 25, 1866
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Lexington
Died: December 4, 1945

Thomas Hunt Morgan was an evolutionary biologist, geneticist, and embryologist. He won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1933. He worked extensively on the role that the chromosome plays in heredity and demonstrated that genes are carried on chromosomes. In his later career, he established the division of biology at the California Institute of Technology. 

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 11 
Walter Reed
(Military physician, Zoologist, Entomologist)

Walter Reed
6
Birthdate: September 13, 1851
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Belroi
Died: November 22, 1902

 12 
Louis Agassiz
(Geologist)

Louis Agassiz
4
Birthdate: May 28, 1807
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Montier
Died: December 14, 1873

Louis Agassiz was a biologist and geologist. He was famous as a scholar of Earth's natural history. Born in Switzerland, he completed his education in Europe and emigrated to USA. He was appointed a professor of zoology and geology at Harvard University. He later founded the Museum of Comparative Zoology at the Lawrence Scientific School.  

 13 
Walter Rothschild, 2nd Baron Rothschild
(Biologist, Banker, Politician, Zoologist, Ornithologist, Entomologist, Lepidopterist)

Walter Rothschild, 2nd Baron Rothschild
4
Birthdate: February 8, 1868
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: England
Died: August 27, 1937

 14 
Jim Fowler
(Former zoologist and host of the acclaimed wildlife documentary television show Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom)

Jim Fowler
4
Birthdate: April 9, 1932
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Albany, Georgia, United States
Died: May 8, 2019
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 15 
Anne McLaren
(Geneticist)

Anne McLaren
4
Birthdate: April 26, 1927
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London, England
Died: July 7, 2007

Geneticist Anne McLaren is remembered for her pioneering research in embryology that paved the way for further research in fertility treatments such as in-vitro fertilization. The Royal Society fellow had also appeared as a child actor in the film adaptation of the H.G. Wells novel Things to Come.

 16 

Ernest Everett Just
3
Birthdate: August 14, 1883
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Charleston, South Carolina, United States
Died: October 27, 1941

Ernest Everett Just was an African-American biologist and academic. He is credited with recognizing the fundamental role of the cell surface in the development of organisms. As a black boy growing up in the late 19th century, he had to face enormous challenges before he could establish himself in his career. He co-founded the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc.  

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 17 
Desmond Morris
(Zoologist)

Desmond Morris
4
Birthdate: January 24, 1928
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Purton, Wiltshire, England

 18 
Élie Metchnikoff
(Former zoologist best known for his pioneering research in immunology)

Élie Metchnikoff
3
Birthdate: May 15, 1845
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ukraine
Died: July 15, 1916

 19 
Peter Medawar
(Biologist)

Peter Medawar
8
Birthdate: February 28, 1915
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Petrópolis, State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Died: October 2, 1987

 20 
John Edward Gray
(Author, zoologist)

John Edward Gray
3
Birthdate: February 12, 1800
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Walsall
Died: March 7, 1875

 21 
Paul R. Ehrlich
(Entomologist, Zoologist, University teacher)

Paul R. Ehrlich
4
Birthdate: May 29, 1932
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Philadelphia

Paul R. Ehrlich is a biologist best known for the 1968 book The Population Bomb, which he co-authored with his wife, Anne. He kindled controversy for his views on the consequences of population growth in a world with limited resources. He has been called an "irrepressible doomster” by his critics, while his supporters credit him for spreading concern about overpopulation. 

 22 
Mary J Rathbun
(Zoologist)

Mary J Rathbun
5
Birthdate: June 11, 1860
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Buffalo, New York, United States
Died: April 4, 1943
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 23 
Gerald Durrell
(Founder of the 'Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust' and the 'Jersey Zoo')

Gerald Durrell
2
Birthdate: January 7, 1925
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Jamshedpur, India
Died: January 30, 1995
Naturalist, author, TV presenter, and zookeeper Gerald Durrell, the youngest brother of author Lawrence Durrell, was the founder of the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust and the Jersey Zoo. His memoirs were made into the series My Family and Other Animals and The Durrells. He was also a skilled Illustrator.

 24 
David Starr Jordan
(Botanist, Peace activist, Zoologist, Autobiographer, Ichthyologist)

David Starr Jordan
3
Birthdate: January 19, 1851
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Gainesville (village), New York
Died: September 19, 1931

Remembered as the first president of the Leland Stanford Junior University, now known as Stanford University, David Starr Jordan was a reputed ichthyologist. An anti-war activist, too, who opposed America’s participation in World War I, he spent his later years as the chief director of the World Peace Foundation.

 25 
Karl Patterson Schmidt
(American zoologist)

Karl Patterson Schmidt
3
Birthdate: June 19, 1890
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Lake Forest, Illinois, United States
Died: September 26, 1957

Karl Patterson Schmidt was a herpetologist. He studied biology and geology at Cornell University and realized his keen interest in herpetology. He later worked as a scientific assistant in herpetology at the American Museum of Natural History. He undertook many collecting expeditions for the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago. He died after being bitten by a boomslang snake. 

 26 
Karl von Frisch
(Ethologist)

Karl von Frisch
3
Birthdate: November 20, 1886
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: June 12, 1982

Nobel Prize-winning ethologist Karl von Frisch is best remembered for his research on communication among bees. He was the first to observe that bees communicate the location of food to other bees by a form of “dance.” He penned down his studies in books such as The Dancing Bees.

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 27 
PZ Myers
(Biologist, Zoologist, Blogger, University teacher)

PZ Myers
3
Birthdate: March 9, 1957
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Kent

PZ Myers is a biologist known for founding the Pharyngula science blog. His blog is one of the top-ranked blogs by a scientist. A "science geek" from an early age, he obtained a Ph.D. in biology from the University of Oregon. As an academician, he has taught at the University of Oregon, the University of Utah, and Temple University.  

 28 
Friedrich Ratzel
(Biologist, Geopolitician, Geographer, Zoologist, Political scientist, University teacher)

Friedrich Ratzel
3
Birthdate: August 30, 1844
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Karlsruhe
Died: August 9, 1904

Friedrich Ratzel was a German ethnographer and geographer. He was the first person to use the term Lebensraum, which would later become an important and popular word among the National Socialists. Also an influential writer, Friedrich Ratzel's works served as a justification for imperial expansion. 

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 29 
Tim Flannery
(Biologist, Paleontologist, Zoologist, Environmentalist)

Tim Flannery
3
Birthdate: January 28, 1956
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Melbourne

Tim Flannery is an Australian paleontologist, mammalogist, environmentalist, explorer, conservationist, and public scientist. Tim Flannery is credited with discovering over 30 mammal species. He is also credited with co-founding Climate Council, a non-profit organization that aims at providing accurate information on climate change to the Australian public. In 2007, Tim Flannery was named Australian of the Year.

 30 
Jim Cronin
(Former Zookeeper who was co-founder in 1987 of Monkey World in Dorset, England, a sanctuary for abused and neglected primates)

Jim Cronin
3
Birthdate: November 15, 1951
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Yonkers, New York, United States
Died: March 17, 2007
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 31 
Conrad Gessner
(Physician)

Conrad Gessner
3
Birthdate: March 26, 1516
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Zürich, Switzerland
Died: December 13, 1565

Born to a poor fur dealer, Conrad Gessner was sent to study under an uncle who dealt in medicinal herbs. He then studied theology but later grew up to become a Renaissance polymath, excelling in subjects such as natural history and medicine. His Bibliotheca universalis remains a major work in bibliography.

 32 
August Weismann
(Biologist, Zoologist, Geneticist)

August Weismann
3
Birthdate: January 17, 1834
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Frankfurt
Died: November 5, 1914
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 33 
Dixie Lee Ray
(Politician)

Dixie Lee Ray
3
Birthdate: September 3, 1914
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Tacoma, Washington, United States
Died: January 2, 1994

 34 

Pierre-André Latreille
3
Birthdate: November 29, 1762
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Brive-la-Gaillarde, France
Died: February 6, 1833
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 35 
Martin William Kratt
(Zoologist, Actor)

Martin William Kratt
0
Birthdate: December 23, 1965
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Warren, New Jersey, United States

 36 

Peter Simon Pallas
3
Birthdate: September 22, 1741
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Berlin, Germany
Died: September 8, 1811
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 37 

Johan Christian Fabricius
3
Birthdate: January 7, 1745
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Tøndern, Denmark
Died: March 3, 1808

Johan Christian Fabricius was a Danish zoologist. He specialized in "Insecta", which at that time included all insects, arachnids, crustaceans, and other anthropoids. He studied under the renowned Swedish zoologist Carl Linnaeus and went on to become one of the most important entomologists of the 18th century. He is credited to have named nearly 10,000 species of animals. 

 38 
Robert T. Paine
(Ecologist)

Robert T. Paine
3
Birthdate: April 13, 1933
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
Died: June 13, 2016

 39 

D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson
3
Birthdate: May 2, 1860
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Edinburgh, Scotland
Died: June 21, 1948

D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson was a Scottish mathematician, biologist, and classics scholar. A pioneer of mathematical biology, Thompson is best remembered for writing a book titled On Growth and Form, which is widely admired by architects, anthropologists, and biologists among others. Over the course of his illustrious career, D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson received several prestigious awards like the Daniel Giraud Elliot Medal.

 40 

Charles Henry Turner
3
Birthdate: February 3, 1867
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
Died: February 14, 1923

 41 
Roger Tory Peterson
(Zoologist, Ornithologist)

Roger Tory Peterson
3
Birthdate: August 28, 1908
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Jamestown, New York, United States
Died: July 28, 1996

 42 
Paul Kammerer
(Biologist)

Paul Kammerer
3
Birthdate: August 17, 1880
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: September 23, 1926

 43 

Mathurin Jacques Brisson
3
Birthdate: April 30, 1723
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Fontenay-le-Comte, France
Died: June 23, 1806

 44 
John Lubbock, 1st Baron Avebury
(Anthropologist, Politician, Archaeologist, Prehistorian, Banker, Statistician, Naturalist, Zoologist, Entomologist)

John Lubbock, 1st Baron Avebury
3
Birthdate: April 30, 1834
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London
Died: May 28, 1913

British banker John Lubbock, 1st Baron Avebury, better known as Sir John Lubbock, had also been an MP. However, he is best known for his contribution to ethnography and archaeology. He is also credited with coining the terms Paleolithic and Neolithic, and is known for his books on animal behavior.

 45 

Carl Peter Thunberg
3
Birthdate: November 11, 1743
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Jönköping, Sweden
Died: August 8, 1828

Carl Peter Thunberg was a Swedish naturalist best remembered as one of the apostles of Carl Linnaeus. Along with other students of Linnaeus, Thunberg spent seven years in Asia and southern Africa, gathering and describing animals and plants new to European science. Thanks to his extensive research on plants, Thunberg is referred to as the father of South African botany.      

 46 

Georg Wilhelm Steller
3
Birthdate: March 10, 1709
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Bad Windsheim, Germany
Died: November 14, 1746

German-born zoologist and botanist Georg Wilhelm Steller traveled to Russia on a troop ship. He was later part of the Great Northern Expedition, aboard the St. Peter, aimed at locating a sea route from Russia to North America. The Steller’s sea cow, discovered by him, went extinct later.

 47 

Edmund Beecher Wilson
3
Birthdate: October 19, 1856
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Geneva, Illinois, United States
Died: March 3, 1939

Edmund Beecher Wilson was an American geneticist and zoologist. He is credited with writing a textbook titled The Cell which is widely regarded as one of the most influential and important books in modern biology. Regarded as America's first cell biologist, Wilson is also credited with discovering the XY sex-determination system which is used to classify several mammals, including humans.

 48 

Charles Sutherland Elton
3
Birthdate: March 29, 1900
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Manchester, England
Died: May 1, 1991

 49 

Solly Zuckerman, Baron Zuckerman
2
Birthdate: May 30, 1904
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Cape Town, South Africa
Died: April 1, 1993

Solly Zuckerman began his career as a research anatomist at the London Zoological Society. Known for his books such as The Social Life of Monkeys and Apes, he had also taught at Oxford University and worked on projects of the British government during World War II, thus developing operational research.

Bernard Germain de Lacépède
3
Birthdate: December 26, 1756
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Agen, France
Died: October 6, 1825