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Debra Dial 

I am a passionate biologist committed to advocating for animals in care by promoting the best husbandry practices. My hope is to inspire and empower others to do the same. 

I have twenty+ years of professional husbandry experience both in the private sector and within professional organizations such as AZA. Currently, I am responsible for co-managing the care of multi-taxa exhibits which include amphibians, fish, reptiles, mammals, inverts and birds. I help to lead a large team of animal and plant  care professionals. My professional focus has been on small mammal (specifically two-toed sloths) and avian husbandry as well as innovative approaches to animal behavior.

In addition to my full-time job as a curator, I own and operate The Educated Zookeeper, LLC and am the founder of S.O.S. The Educated Zookeeper and S.O.S. provide opportunities to connect zookeepers with researchers, each other and wildlife professionals and serve as a archive of information that is available to all professionals regardless of any specific professional association affiliation.

I am available to consult on new exhibit builds, create zoo-wide behavior programs and as a public speaker. For more information please feel free to check out my full bio and cv available at

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