New Podcast Episode: Patricia Wright (Ranomafana National Park)

The latest mammalwatching podcast episode is out and we talk to conservation legend and primatologist Patricia Wright.

Dr Wright is most famous for her work in Madagascar, including her discovery of the Golden Bamboo Lemur. She is Founder and Executive Director of Stony Brook University Institute for the Conservation of Tropical Environments, and Founder and Executive Director of the Centre ValBio, a research and training center in Ranomafana, Madagascar. Some of her many achievements during a very distinguished career include being the first woman to win the Indianapolis Prize (the ‘Nobel Prize for Conservation’), won a prestigious MacArthur Fellowship (Genius Award) and had three medals of honor from the Malagasy government.

During a fascinating chat we learn how a chance encounter with a night (owl) monkey in a Brooklyn pet store changed the course of Patricia’s life from New York social worker to primatologist. She describes the thrill of discovering a new species – the Golden Bamboo Lemur – in 1986, and the daunting challenge of trying to establish its habitat as a national park and a UNESCO World Heritage Site: Ranomafana National Park.

Patricia explains why she feels it is so important to get local people involved in conservation: the ‘jigsaw puzzle’ of an integrated approach. And how the community in Ranomafana were ready to support its protection in exchange for better access to health care, education and … soccer balls!

You can listen to it here or on Spotify, Itunes or wherever you get your podcasts (search for ‘mammalwatching’).



Post author

Jon Hall


  • DiedertK

    I’ll post my Mystery Mammal answer here as well: I’m going for Sumatran Rhino, mostly based on the hints.

  • Ben S

    I’ve heard tapirs making similar sounds. I’d guess Malayan Tapir if it weren’t for the “vanishingly rare” hint. Given that and the relatively close taxonomic relationship of tapirs and rhinos, I think Diedert’s guess makes sense.

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