Timothy Eppley, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Associate

Dr. Timothy Eppley serves San Diego Zoo Global as a Postdoctoral Associate in Collections Husbandry Science - Primates and Global Partnerships. Timothy’s research is broadly based in primate behavioral ecology and conservation, and the majority of his research specifically focuses on the effects of fragmented landscapes on lemur behavior and feeding ecology. He is currently using lemur behavioral ecology data to help direct lemur conservation efforts in the rainforests of northeast Madagascar.

Timothy’s research projects include assessing the current species range distribution of the critically endangered red ruffed lemur.  Although this iconic species is charismatic and ubiquitous within zoological parks worldwide, it is among the most endangered primate species on earth, only existing within a few forests. Some of the species’ range is protected; however, even these areas are currently under threat from illegal logging operations and hunters. His work surveying these remote forests is critical to conservation efforts, allowing for genetic health assessments of these remaining populations that will assist in identifying priority areas for immediate conservation action.

Timothy earned his doctorate in Animal Ecology and Conservation from the University of Hamburg. His dissertation research focused on the behavioral ecology of the southern bamboo lemur.  Specifically, he studied how this dietary specialist primate is able to subsist in a fragmented landscape devoid of its preferred resource, bamboo, ultimately showing that this species is more ecologically flexible than previously thought. He was an affiliated postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Texas-Austin before joining San Diego Zoo Global. Timothy maintains an affiliation with the Nocturnal Primate Research Group at Oxford Brookes University, and has spent a significant amount of time working with bonobos in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

SCIENCE AT WORK