May 10 Speaker Series: Reproductive science & wolves

Asa headshot

Dr. Cheryl Asa of the Saint Louis Zoo

Here’s your chance to hear world-renowned scientist Cheryl Asa of the Saint Louis Zoo,  whose work in reproductive science has contributed greatly to the recovery of Mexican wolves.

She will appear at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 10, as  part of the Endangered Wolf Center 2016 Speaker Series.

Dr. Asa, PhD, will be retiring this summer from the positions of Director of Reproductive and Behavioral Sciences and Director of the AZA Reproductive Management Center at the Saint Louis Zoo after almost 28 years.

Her Speaker Series presentation — “How Reproductive Science Contributes to Mexican Wolf Recovery” ­— will be of keen interest to friends of the Endangered Wolf Center and anyone with an interest in saving threatened species.

The cost is just $10 a person for this chance to meet Dr. Asa and ask her questions. Reservations are required and easily made by calling 636-938-5900. Seating is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

After being declared extinct in the wild, Mexican wolves have been successfully bred in zoos in the United States and Mexico to provide animals for reintroduction.  Reproductive science and management have contributed to this success through gene banking, hormone monitoring, artificial insemination, behavioral observations and even contraception.

In 1990, Dr. Asa was asked by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to establish a semen bank for the Mexican wolf, which has expanded to include eggs and ovarian tissue from females as well. Her lab has pioneered assisted reproduction methods for management of Mexican wolf population genetics and has identified factors affecting fertility across canid species.

Dr. Asa’s first canid research was in Peru in 1981 with Sechuran desert foxes.  She has since studied gray wolves, including the Mexican wolf; fennec foxes; African painted dogs; coyotes; and island foxes.

The one-hour Speaker Series program, followed by a question and answer session, will be held in Tyson Research Center’s Living Learning Center. Come to the Endangered Wolf Center’s front gate at 6750 Tyson Valley Road, Eureka, MO 63025, and you’ll be directed to the Living Learning Center. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the talk will start at 7 p.m.

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