Executive Director Trustee, ZOO
I moved to Coimbatore 27 years back from Bengaluru when I joined ZOO as a program officer. Having assisted Sally in all of the ZOO activities I specialized as a research and conservation scientist; the philosophy I share with Sally I continue in her shoes as executive director. I have a PhD on bats and rodents of Coorg and I specialize in risk assessments and conservation planning of species (plants, animals and fungi), in promoting peer-reviewed publications, and in communicating science for conservation. I share common likes of wilderness and school outreach with my wife Payal and our daughter Elakshi Mahika.
Latha G Ravikumar
Finance Director Trustee, ZOO
I began as an accountant/computer operator and now with an MBA and as the Finance Director and Administrator. I oversee accounts, administration, and legalities. I’m also integrally involved in all the projects, Zoos’ Print, scientific databases, web developing and designing, helping with developing educational materials, travel planning, computer services among others. I have been working in ZOO more than 29 years. I got to learn many things from my mentor, friend and boss Ms. Sally Walker to whom I am grateful beyond words. My big family (parents, brothers, hubby Ravikumar, kids Rajesh, Tarun and Manjari) are my strength and are willing volunteers of tasks at ZOO.
Secretary Trustee, ZOO
I hail from Rajapalayam, known for the hound dog. After graduation from Madurai Kamaraj University, I earned a Ph.D. from Kerala University. I worked as honorary biologist at Grizzled Giant Squirrel WS until I joined ZOO in 1995 and took the challenge of promoting invertebrate conservation in South Asian countries. I chair the IUCN SSC South Asian Invertebrate Specialist Group and run a network of invertebrate experts in South Asia. My special interest is conservation education and help develop education materials and modules. I travel extensively and love to help needy people. My wife Rebecca and son Josh support me in all my conservation endeavors.
I am a native of Tiruvarur District of Tamil Nadu and have a graduate degree in Wildlife Biology from A.V.C. College, Mayiladuthurai. I worked as a biologist at Arignar Anna Zoological Park, Chennai for a few years. I first joined ZOO as a Research Assistant in 1990, worked for four years and worked in Brunei before rejoining ZOO in 2004. Though my special interest is creating conservation awareness to the different strata of people in the society, of late I am concentrating more on raising funds to do field projects, arranging capacity building training for forest personnel and education projects. My pastime is visiting zoos and protected areas in India and abroad.
Managing Editor, JoTT
I joined as an Administrative Assistant in 1999 with office clerical works and assisted in more than 15 workshops (PHVA, CAMP, Field Technique, Teachers for Tigers series, SAZARC). While maintaining the library at ZOO, I developed DTP skills and became an editorial assistant for Zoo’s Print Journal in 2014. Later I Joined JoTT as a Managing Editor when it started in 2009. I have an undergraduate degree, but my attempt at a graduate degree was in vain as JoTT and personal life kept me very busy. I’m married and have one daughter. Hobbies are sports, listening to music and photography.
I have been working in ZOO for more than 20 years. I help with accounts, administration, projects and educational printing and compilation works. I am always willing to do any job that is given to me. I love to be a part of ZOO. My hobbies are making rangoli, listening to music, and helping people. I have two sons named Veerakumar and Ashok and both have completed engineering degrees and are ready for their adventure.
I have been working in ZOO since 2007. I help with projects, accounts, administration, typesetting, web work etc. I am a native of Coimbatore and have a graduate degree in commerce. I love to learn new things. I have a smart 11 year old daughter Sanjana and a hardworking husband Suresh. I love to watch movies and spend time with family.
G. Arul Jegadish
Sr. Project Assistant
I joined ZOO in 2000. I started off as helping the office staff in various things. I also assisted in setting up and running the screen printing unit for about 10 years. Presently, my work includes typesetting, scanning, education packets compilation, communication etc. My hobbies are drawing, photography, and I love to help girls in the office. I am very interested in learning about handling snakes. I love bikes and I enjoy the thrill of the Bullet 350cc I bought recently.
Researcher / Editorial Assistant
I fell in love with wildlife a long time ago, which has kept me going. After an undergraduate degree in mass communication from Mumbai University I pursued my passion by exploring various aspects of conservation such as publications, education, field research and policy work. After over 5 years of work experience including projects concerning freshwater biodiversity conservation, I went on to earn an M.Phil in Conservation Leadership from the University of Cambridge. I am currently working as an Associate Editor of JoTT and a researcher interested in marine life. My hobbies include reading, dance and wildlife art.
P. Vishal Ajuha
I hail from Chamba and am a teacher by trade. I joined WILD in 2012 for the Himalayan Grey Langur Project. I and my team, studied the distribution, threats, and conservation status of Chamba Sacred Langur. I am married and have two kids.
I hail from Bangalore and basically a physicist. Now, I am on my journey to explore wildlife and am yet to find out how I can contribute to conserving them through research.
I have completed my Master's and explored the concepts of conflict and coexistence through understanding people’s perceptions of elephants and their interactions. At WILD, I will be assisting with the Journal of Threatened Taxa.
I have recently completed a master's degree in primatology and conservation at Oxford Brookes University in the UK. My research interests include behavioural ecology, biogeography, and conservation biology of mammals, particularly primates. Currently, I am working on bonnet macaques in Kerala as part of the Thenmala Macaque Project.
I have a Master's degree in Environmental Biology and Wildlife Sciences from Cotton University in Guwahati, Assam, with a focus on Advanced Community Ecology. Human-primate interactions and multiple species interfaces in anthropogenic landscapes are of particular interest to me. Currently, I am working on the Thenmala Primate Project.
I'm an MSc Ecology student from Pondicherry University. I'm a wildlife enthusiast and I like studying human perceptions. I like spending my time with forests and other indigenous communities. I was a proud student in Zoo Outreach Organization's first batch of Ram Hattikudur Advanced Training Course.
Arya is a PhD student working at the School of Ocean Science & Technology, Kerala University of Fisheries and Ocean Studies (KUFOS), Kochi. She has a keen interest in molecular ecology & conservation. Her current research focuses on the diversity, phylogenetics, evolution & biogeography of freshwater fish (though she collaborates on research involving a range of vertebrate and invertebrate taxa), with her PhD thesis examining how riverine barriers influence the genetic diversity & phylogeography of endemic & threatened hillstream loaches of the Western Ghats.
I have completed my M.Phil in Zoology and took part in various field-based projects conducted by the TN forest department, to understand human-wildlife conflict. This experience has driven me to work towards community people engaged in wildlife conservation-oriented activities. My travel around the Western Ghats of Tamil Nadu helped me understand their culture and their perception of wildlife. Currently, I am working on the Joint Forest Management programme involving the local community in Srivilliputhur.
I joined Sally in 1980 much before she started ZOO. When she was at Mysore Zoo I helped raise many tiger cubs, and babies of chimpanzee, otter, bustard and other animals. I saw Sally work really hard when she set up ZOO in Mysore and I moved with her to Coimbatore and have dedicated my life in the service of Sally and ZOO. I work on several things in office and keep everybody on track. In addition to all my kids at ZOO, I have seven children of my own.
Also we hire many temporary and part time employees time to time for short-term projects.
Manju Siliwal earned her doctorate degree on ‘Spiders of Agroecosystem’ from M.S. University of Baroda, Gujarat in 2002. She joined as a post-doctorate fellow at WILD in 2002 to study mygalomorph (tarantula and related) spiders. In the last two decades I have worked on the taxonomy of spiders and have developed expertise on mygalomorph systematics. She teaches spider taxonomy to undergraduate students and researchers. At present, she is affiliated with the Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun for the DST-Women Scientist (A) grant for a molecular systematics project on mygalomorphs. She has over 55 peer-reviewed publications and have received many international grants.
Mewa Singh is an internationally acclaimed expert on ecology and animal behaviour with emphasis on non-human primates. His research has paved the way to better understand social behaviour, resource distribution strategies, ecology, demography and the impacts of habitat destruction on various threatened species. His work on the Slender Loris and the Lion-tailed Macaque brought international attention to these highly endangered but little-known species and has driven on-ground conservation action. His decades long career has seen him shine in the role of Dean at University of Mysore and is currently a Professor For Life at the University. He has mentored a generation of students, many of whom are pursuing studies of their own in the domain of animal behavior, ecology, and conservation biology. With several awards to his credit and with a vast knowledge in various fields of science Mewa is a treasure trove and a steady guiding hand for the students.
Sameer Padhyae is a Data Analyst with 9+ years of experience in interpreting and analyzing scientific research data and am proficient in data wrangling, modeling & visualization. His research interests include systematics, biodiversity and biogeography of Branchiopoda (Arthropoda: Crustacea) from the Indian subcontinent, biodiversity dynamics and community ecology of some freshwater invertebrates in the Oriental tropics with special reference to eutrophicated water bodies and rock pools.
Smrithy Raj is a PhD student in the Department of Aquatic Biology and Fisheries focusing on the freshwater fish invasion in the southern Western Ghats. His interests are freshwater fish taxonomy and conservation, invasive species, the biology of invasive species, evidence-based impact studies on the species invasion, population dynamics of invasive species and taxonomy and conservation of freshwater crabs.
Smitha Daniel is a primatologist working on Slender Lorise's ecology, their conservation, and threats for the last 8 years in the Western Ghats. She is the first person to study the behavioural ecology of the Malabar Slender Loris in its natural habitat. Her research interests also include ecology and conservation of urban bats and wildlife-human interactions.
Sayantan Das manages the Nicobar Project of the Biopsychology laboratory at the University of Mysore. He is interested in behavior, ecology and environmental conservation.
Supriya Samanta is a Zoology postgraduate from West Bengal's Sidho-Kanho-Birsha University. He's volunteering with the Purulia Forest Department in the Ajodhya Hills to collect baseline data and conduct scientific studies. He and his friends from Purulia and Bankura, West Bengal, formed the 'Green Plateau' group to protect the region's biodiversity. Save Ajodhya Hills is a social media campaign that involves all stakeholders in order to preserve the faunal, floral, and traditional diversity of the region's landscape.