A century ago members of the Canadian and U.S. elite created a gold standard in wildlife conservation, one that is quickly fading from memory.
Valerius GeistProfessor Emeritus of Environmental Science, Faculty of Environmental Design, University of Calgary.
Dr. Geist holds an honours BSc in zoology (1960), and a Ph.D of zoology in ethology (1967), both from the University of British Columbia. He completed his postdoctoral studies In Seewiesen, Germany at the Max-Planck Institut für Verhaltensphysiologie (1967-1968), under Professor Konrad Lorenz. He is Professor Emeritus of Environmental Science, and a founding member and the first Program Director of environmental science in the Faculty of Environmental Design at the University of Calgary. He taught graduate studies in environmental science and human biology, in particular how to maximize health environmentally. A second line of teaching and research centred on policies in wildlife conservation, large-mammal biology (with emphasis on big game & behaviour) and their management. He also taught undergraduate courses in biology, ethology, ecology, evolution, wildlife management, with a primary focus on ecology in human affairs. He is certified by Alberta Society of Professional Biologists, and served as the President of the now closed Wildlife Heritage Ltd., which consulted on large mammal ecology and taxonomy in relation to conservation legislation, industrial developments, land use conflicts, and developing terms of reference for environmental impact assessment. He remains an active member in international conservation organizations such as the IUCN (International Union for the Conservation of Nature), and the Boone & Crockett club. He is the author and/or editor of 17 books, including: *Mountain Sheep* (1971), the acclaimed *Life Strategies* (1975), and *Deer of the World* (1998). He has also written 7 documentary films. His work has been published in prestigious science journals, such as: *Nature* (London), *Ethology, Behaviour, Evolution*, *Natural History*, *Harrowsmith*, *Outdoor Life*, *Field and Stream*, as well as in prestigious encyclopedias such as *Grzimek's*, *The New Canadian Encyclopedia*, and *Encyclopedia Britannica*. He has acted as an expert witness in wildlife law enforcement and policy, environmental policy, native treaties, animal behaviour and wildlife/vehicle collisions cases in the United States and Canada – most notably on wildlife conservation policy in court, before Senate of the State of Montana (1995) and before the Parliamentary Committee on Environment, and Sustainable Development in Ottawa (1994).