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Chris Hobson - Trustee
Copyright © 2003 World Chelonian Trust. All rights reserved
Chris Hobson has been an animal person all of his life. It started with long summer days in central Virginia, spending hours in the streams, fields, and woodlots near his suburban home. When most kids were playing baseball and soccer, he was usually knee deep in a swamp chasing down a northern water snake or a spotted turtle. Chris always knew he wanted to be a biologist.
Chris began his road to becoming a professional biologist by obtaining a Bachelor of Science degree from Ferrum College. At Ferrum, he was really turned on to ecology and natural history, particularly that of caves, small mammals, and bats. He then went on to obtain a Master of Science degree from Tennessee Technological University where his thesis focused on the summer distribution, status, and ecology of bats in western Virginia.
In 1993, he was hired as a field biologist with the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, Division of Natural Heritage (DCR-DNH). Chris currently works as Natural Area Zoologist with DCR-DNH, a position which allows him to learn more about a variety of animals in Virginia, and teach others about them through educational programs.
Through the years, his field experience has allowed him to work with a variety of chelonians in their natural environment, including bog turtles, wood turtles, map turtles, spotted turtles, and others primarily in the southeastern United States. In 2000, he traveled to Springbok, South Africa to assist with the collection of field data on the speckled padloper (Homopus signatus signatus). In 2001, he returned to South Africa to attend the Herpetological Association of Africa meeting, and then traveled to western Zimbabwe. In January 2002, he participated in the Kadoorie rescue effort as part of the measuring team for the last shipment acquired by the TSA from Hong Kong. Chris recently became a partner in the Turtle Survival Alliance.
As a chelonian keeper, Chris has worked with several tortoises, and north American freshwater turtles. His current interests include the hinge-backed tortoises of the genus Kinixys, and pancake tortoises (Malacochersus tornieri).
Chris became associated with the WCT through fellow trustee Paula Morris (thanks Paula!), and has thoroughly enjoyed working with the group. He is proud to be associated with such a dedicated group of people, and he looks forward to helping the group further our goals of conservation and education.
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