Damien Caillaud, DVM, Ph.D.

Research Director

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Damien Caillaud is a Research Associate with the Fossey Fund’s Karisoke Research Center and Director of Research for the Fossey Fund’s Grauer’s gorilla program in Congo. His research focuses on gorilla social behavior, ecology, demography and conservation. He does most of his field work in Congo in the Fossey Fund’s Nkuba-Biruwe Research and Conservation Area and at Kahuzi-Biega National Park. He also manages the long-term database on the mountain gorillas studied since 1967 by the Karisoke Research Center. Caillaud designed Animal Observer, a Fossey Fund iPad application helping researchers and conservationists record behavioral and health data on wild animals.

Initially trained as a veterinarian, Caillaud has been studying wild primates since 2003 and received his Ph.D. at the University of Montpellier, where he studied western lowland gorillas. He then worked as a post-doctoral researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Germany and at the University of Texas at Austin. He has done field work on wild primates in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Namibia, Uganda and Madagascar. He is currently based at the University of California, Davis, where he is assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology.