Jane Goodall, Steve Irwin, and Chris & Martin Kratt inspired a generation of wildlife lovers through the television screen. Now, upcoming Delaware Valley University students in the field are following in their footsteps to educate and inspire the public on zoology and conservation.
Creature Cal- Youtube
Equal parts hilarious and wildly educational, sophomore Calvin Campos (Zoo Science 2025) owns and operates his own Youtube channel. Growing up with a love of animals and an endless curiosity, Calvin began recording videos at zoos and aquariums. When he wanted to record a video on animals not found in a facility, Calvin turned to animation to bring the creatures to life.
And the people loved it. The channel exploded in popularity from video series such as “Creature Combat,” garnering a monumental 1.8 million views on the pilot episode.
As for the future of Creature Cal, viewers can anticipate more philanthropic work and fundraising for animal charities, but still expect the zoology-based videos that made the channel what it is today. Calvin hopes to continue the series and one day produce it into a television series.
Saritazoo & Saritapaleo- Instagram
What do you get when you combine photography, artwork, and a passion for all animals? Saritazoo!
Sarah Armstrong is a Conservation and Wildlife major on track to graduate in the spring of 2024. Using her digital art skills, Sarah creates educational zoology infographics for the public.
She combines eye-catching pictures to draw the viewer in and grab their attention, using the opportunity to encourage learning.
“I want to create answers to common questions Zoologists face in a fun and interesting way. Information like cladistics and what makes an animal an animal are a lot easier to explain and comprehend when art is involved!”
Like a blast from the past, Sarah also runs a paleo account focused on illustrating paleozoological specimens.
As technology advances, so does our understanding of the majestic creatures that lived before us. Artists play a pivotal role in providing a descriptive image based on scientific informed hypothesis.
“My goal is to help in continuing to change the general perception of dinosaurs from movie monsters to simply extinct animals that and acted like animals.” She stated. “By normalizing these more plausible designs in a fun and easy to digest way, I’d love to find out I brought back someone’s love for dinosaurs the same way other paleo artists have done for me.”
While illustrating and educating are her passions, Sarah’s main goal is to pursue zookeeping and active work with animals.
The Butterfly Effect- Instagram
Bugs? Check. Art? Double-check. Sophomore Conservation and Wildlife Management major Elizabeth Weed loves insects. Specifically, she adores Lepidopterans: butterflies and moths.
Through her digital artwork, Elizabeth seeks to illustrate every North American butterfly (and eventually moth), providing conservation information on each butterfly as she goes.
“Some butterflies take hours to render, others take me weeks to paint, making sure to get all the minute details correct. I like to make them as realistic as possible for an added oomph.”
The project began as a long-term challenge for the artist, but rapidly evolved to become a subject of research and study.
“Not everyone has a meadow or forest in their backyard, but learning about the wonderful creatures that inhabit this planet is crucial to conservation efforts.” She began. “Through my art and knowledge about insects, I can bring the nature to anyone, anywhere.”
Knowing the impact is a strong motivation. With butterfly populations in decline, highlighting species through artwork helps them live on. It also provides people with an opportunity to learn about insects in their area, and how to support them through planting native foliage.
Moving forward, Elizabeth hopes to continue wildlife illustration as a hobby and pursue a career in entomology or ornithology research.
Graduating with a B.S. in Zoo Science in May 2023, Sofia Kwak runs an Instagram account dedicated to her favorite mammal: elephants!
Through the use of info graphs and photos, she provides informational and adorable information on the world’s largest land mammal.
In the future, Sofia plans on working as a small animal/primate keeper at the Philadelphia Zoo.