Christian Ziegler, a native of Germany, is a photojournalist specializing in natural history and science topics. A tropical ecologist by training, he has been working extensively in tropical rain forests on three continents.
Ziegler is Associate for Communication with the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) in Panama, where the main focus of his work has been for the last ten years. As an assignment for STRI, he spent 15 months in the field taking the images for a book on the ecology of tropical forests. A Magic Web, published by Oxford University Press in 2002, was named the best biology book by the American Association of Publishers. He sees himself as a translator, sharing the extraordinary beauty and scientific fascination of tropical ecosystems with the general public and thereby raising awareness for their conservation.
Ziegler’s work is frequently contracted and published internationally in leading magazines such as National Geographic, GEO, BBC Wildlife, National Wildlife, and others. In addition to his editorial work, Ziegler has been working in educational projects with museums and with environmental groups such as Conservation International and the World Wildlife Fund. He also has worked extensively with the scientific community, mainly by contributing thousands of images to the Smithsonian Institution, but also in collaborations with Princeton University, Max Plank Institute, and others.
His work has been awarded several international prizes, including two category winners each in the BBC’s WPY and the EWPY, the Grand Prize of the National Wildlife Foundation’s annual photo contest, and several feature category prizes in Pictures of the Year. Single exhibitions of Ziegler’s work include a travel exhibition produced by the Smithsonian Travel Exhibition Center and an exhibit produced by GEO magazine. Ziegler is a founding fellow of the International League of Conservation Photographers (ILCP).