Dr. Kerstin Ternes has been a senior veterinarian and curator for marine mammals at Zoo Duisburg since 2008. After her time at the university, she was employed at the Hagenbeck Animal Park, then at the Wildlife Safari Park Winston, Oregon (USA). Her next stop was Heidelberg Zoo, where she wrote her doctoral thesis on tuberculosis in seals. After that she took part in internships at the Research and Technology Center of the University of Kiel, the Marine Aquarium of Valencia and at Sea World in San Diego. Since 2012, Kerstin Ternes is a veterinan for zoo and wild animals and since 2015 has been a Diplomate of the European College of Zoological Medicine.
Michael Miersch is managing director of the departments for communication and natural education at the Deutsche Wildtierstiftung. Previously, he worked as an author, columnist and journalist for major journals in science, society and politics, and wrote the scripts of numerous animal films for the german channels of ARD. In 2000, Miersch, together with co-authors and in cooperation with the IUCN and the UNEP, published the book “Life Counts – a global balance of life”, which received international attention. His books, reports and columns were translated into many languages and received awards at in Germany and abroad, including “Science Book of the Year” twice.
Wolfgang Rades, born in 1956, is a graduate biologist and since 2015 zoological director of Loro Parque. He studied biology in Düsseldorf and Bonn, focusing on Herpetology, Limnology, Marine Biology, Behavioral Biology, Zoo Biology and Animal Ecology. He first worked as a Biological-Technical Assistant at the environmental agency in Düsseldorf, then he began his career at zoological institutions as an assistant, senior animal keeper and zoo pedagogue in Heidelberg, Solingen and Bochum. From 1993 to 2001 he worked as a species protection expert and head of Species Conservation Center of the NABU in Leiferde and represented the association as an expert in the Federal Office for Nature Conservation and other institutions. From 2002 to 2015, Wolfgang Rades was zoological director and from 2011 also CEO of the bird and nature conservation zoo in Herborn. From December 2015 to January 2018, he was Zoological Director at Loro Parque, Tenerife, where he was among others intensively concerned with the conservation breeding and habitat protection of endangered parrot species, the husbandry of marine mammals and the nature, species and animal welfare engagement of an exemplary modern zoological garden. Since his return to Germany, he is committed to the consistent development of zoos to modern zoos and nature conservation centers in this country. Since January 2019, he has once again been working for Loro Parque as Wildlife Conservation Officer for Europe.
Prof. em. Dr. Dietmar Todt was director of the Institute of Behavioral Biology at Freie Universität Berlin. He did a doctorate in botany and habilitated in zoology. His specialty is the acoustic communication of birds and mammals. He has built numerous research projects within and outside of Europe. In Israel he investigated the behavior of dolphins. After his retirement, he founded the ANCOR (Animal Conservation Research) project aiming to use behavioral biology for endangered animal species.
Dr. Immanuel Birmelin, born in 1943, is a behavioral researcher. He studied biology and chemistry, promoted at the University of Berne and was a member of the research group of the German Veterinary Society for many years. His specialty is the scientific recording of animal welfare issues. As an expert in animal welfare, he helps to translate the findings from science into practice. Together with the science journalist Volker Arzt, he made numerous documentary films.