The Wildlife Conservation Research Unit

The planet’s human population increases by more than 200,000 people every day. This exerts ever more severe and intensifying pressure on finite natural resources throughout the world. The resulting environmental degradation, biodiversity loss and climate change destroys nature and impacts human well-being. The mission of the Wildlife Conservation Research Unit (WildCRU) is to achieve practical solutions to conservation problems through original scientific research. Our research is used worldwide to advise environmental policy-makers. The need for our efforts is greater than ever.

Part of the University of Oxford’s Department of Zoology, WildCRU is a pioneering, inter-disciplinary research unit in a world-class academic centre. We underpin solutions to conservation problems through primary scientific research of the highest calibre. Our approach is empirical, interdisciplinary and collaborative, seeking to include all four elements of our “Conservation Quartet” research to understand and address the problem; education to explain it; community involvement to ensure participation and acceptance; and implementation of long-term solutions.

Video narrated by Prof David Macdonald. Created by, and used with the kind permission of United for Wildlife:


New light flashed on the little known endangered cats of Sumatra’s dark forests: a camera trapping study of clouded leopards and golden cats.

September 20, 2018

Studying invisible animals takes time but turns out to be worth it, reflects David Macdonald as WildCRU and collaborators publish the findings of a remarkable study of Sunda ... Read full story

WildCRU Conservation Geopolitics Forum

September 18, 2018

3 WEEKS LEFT TO SUBMIT PAPER / POSTER ABSTRACTS 19th - 22nd March 2019, Oxford, UK Wildlife is threatened by challenges that are global in scale. These challenges are influenced ... Read full story

Training at WildCRU: Gems from the cutting room floor

September 12, 2018

In September, David Macdonald was nominated for the Award for Conservation Excellence (ACE) and the organisers commissioned a 4-minute film to promote his nomination (you can see that ... Read full story

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