Sunset on the African savanna

Conservation Is Our Mission. Science Is Our Method.

Protecting Wildlife, Near and Far

With one of the largest zoo-based conservation and science programs in the country, Lincoln Park Zoo is dedicated to using science to conserve wildlife and provide better care. Today, zoo scientists are studying how wildlife use cities, leading conservation research in the savannas and forests of Africa, monitoring behavior  to improve the welfare of zoo animals, and much more.

Below, explore a section of our initiatives and projects past and present that have made an impact around the globe.

A graphic element depicting the physical locations of various science projects mentioned on this page.

Since 1989, Our Scientific Team Has:

500 +

zoo species with science-based management recommendations

Partnered with
100 +

universities, NGOs, government agencies, and zoos and aquariums around the world

250 +

wildlife species from Chicago to the Republic of Congo

450 +

undergraduate interns, graduate students, and post-doctoral fellows

275 +

scientific articles and book chapters

Zoo scientist observing a swimming African penguin in exhibit

Enhancing Animal Welfare

Our scientists use a wide array of scientific tools to assess and measure animal welfare, integrating science with management to provide each individual with the opportunity to thrive.

Red wolves and pup in exhibit

Supporting Healthy Populations

We study how different demographic, genetic, and management strategies affect long-term population health and viability, and assist managers across the zoo community with applying those principles to manage populations.

Wild chimpanzee climbing through the trees

Conserving Threatened Wildlife

Our research helps inform better ways to protect endangered wildlife and their habitats.

Wild coyote standing beneath an electric tower

Helping People and Wildlife Coexist

We research techniques that support coexistence between humans and nature, from downtown Chicago to the savannas of Tanzania.

Science Centers

The worldwide reach of our Conservation & Science initiatives is reflected in the zoo’s broad array of research centers. By expanding our understanding of animals and the threats they face, zoo scientists are improving the lives of individual animals and preserving threatened species.


Western lowland gorillas socialize in exhibit

Get Involved

Zoo scientists observe a giraffe in exhibit

Collaborate With Us

We’re always exploring ways to develop collaborative research projects and expand our impact.


African penguin eating fish in exhibit

Take Action With Us

Our day-to-day choices can have a big collective impact. Interested in ways you can help protect wildlife?


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