National Geographic

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Christian Ziegler is a photojournalist specialising in natural history and science-related topics. He is a regular contributor to National Geographic Magazine and has been widely published in other magazines like GEO, Smithsonian and BBC Wildlife. A tropical ecologist by training, he has worked in tropical rain forests on four continents, and for the past 10 years has been associate for communication with the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) in Panama. Christian photographed “A Magic Web”, a coffee table book on tropical ecology on assignment for STRI and just published “Deceptive beauties,” a book about wild orchids. He is a founding fellow of the International League of Conservation Photographers (, for which he volunteers assignments every year. Christian's work has been awarded prizes in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year and the European Wildlife Photographer of the Year competitions, and in 2008, he has was honored with the Vision Award by the North American Nature Photography Association. Christian lives on the edge of a rain forest national park in central Panama and currently works on several magazine assignments and book projects, as well as a biodiversity museum.

Bonobos Find Peace in Congo Forest Sanctuary

Photographer Christian Ziegler recalls his first encounter with a wild bonobo while on assignment for National Geographic in the Congo’s rain forest. Like ecotourists and researchers, he was able to get up close to the great ape because of the efforts of a remarkable partnership of indigenous people and conservation groups dedicated to safeguarding the forest for the human and animal communities depending on a healthy environment.

Lola ya Bonobo – Paradise for Bonobos

Panama-based Christian Ziegler specializes in nature photography. His exclusive photos of bonobos appear in the March 2013 issue of National Geographic, illustrating “The Left Bank Ape”, written by David Quammen. In this blog post for News Watch, Ziegler portrays Lola ya Bonobo, a sanctuary for bonobos orphaned by hunters who took their mothers for bushmeat. Here in the grounds of a former country club on the edge of Kinshasa, human “mamas” act as surrogate mothers for baby bonobos, giving them the love and stimulation essential for them to survive.