Pandas, Butterflies, and Biomimicry

It has been more than a year and a half now that San Diego Zoo Global staff members have been contributing monthly articles in the Conservation Beat e-newsletter (sign up here!) and in the Biomimicry Blog on their thoughts regarding biomimicry. Biomimicry is learning from nature, and we often think of it as bio-inspiration because of the tendency to be inspired by nature.

Various employees have written about what inspires them, and that inspiration is reflected in different ways. Articles have included nature’s influence on business, architecture, robotics, the economy, and health care. In different articles the inspiration has included pandas, bamboo, swarm intelligence, butterflies, coyotes, Mang Mountain pit vipers, and kingfishers.

Besides the articles in Conservation Beat, another treat for folks close to us is to attend one of our Biomimicry Receptions at the Zoo or at our Beckman Center for Conservation Research. Periodically we have these wonderful evening events with a speaker talking about his or her connection to biomimicry and how it is positively affecting their profession, industry, or efforts.

These social events tend to be about two hours in length and are special evenings for all who attend. The next two events have the potential to fascinate their audience with brand-new examples of the application of biomimicry. How is this for a summary of our next talk on Wednesday, September 28, at the Zoo?
“Shrimp-inspired body armor. Nano-scale energy generation. David Kisailus, Ph.D., and his students look to nature in designing the next generation of engineering products and materials.” Sounds fascinating, doesn’t it? Our speaker, Dr. Kisailus, is from University of California, Riverside.

Then on Wednesday, October 27, at the Beckman Center, Richard Lieber, Ph.D., will give a talk involving examples of how bio-inspiration is positively impacting his work in musculoskeletal research at the University of California, San Diego.

Here is a link to the Biomimicry Reception page on our website:

Hope to see you there!

Jon Prange is the venture business manager for San Diego Zoo Global. Read his previous post, Biomimicry: City of San Diego Collaboration.

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