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Zoo New England General Curator honored with prestigious award

Boston, Mass. – Frederick Beall, Zoo New England General Curator, was recently honored with the Plume Award at the mid-year meeting of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums Conference held in Memphis, Tenn.

Beall, who has worked for Zoo New England for more than 20 years, was awarded the Plume #3 Award by the Avian Scientific Advisory Group. This award recognizes an individual or institution’s exceptional achievement in zoo aviculture and is only awarded periodically, in fact, it has been several years since this award was last presented.

“This is a well-deserved honor for Fred, who has dedicated his professional career to the zoological industry. He has been instrumental in the advancement and deeper understanding of a wide variety of bird species, notably cranes, waterfowl and black- footed penguins,” said John Linehan, Zoo New England President and CEO.

Beall began his career in 1966 as an Animal Keeper caring for birds at the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore. By 1978, he served as the Curator for Birds for the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore, a position he held until 1992 when he joined the staff at Zoo New England.

Throughout his time in Baltimore, he helped establish the black-footed penguin colony, including husbandry and breeding protocols. Throughout a 20-year-period, more than 500 African black-footed penguins hatched. He established the North American Regional Studbook for African black-footed penguins, which evolved into the African Black- footed Penguin Species Survival Plan.

In 1987, Beall established the Regional Studbook (North America) for Wattled Cranes, which expanded into the International Studbook (Global) for Wattled Cranes. Since then, he has continuously served as the International Studbook Keeper and the North American Species Survival Plan Coordinator for Wattled Cranes. He has participated in a number of international workshops dedicated to crane species.

Throughout his distinguished zoo career, Beall has had great success breeding endangered cranes through artificial insemination techniques and environmental manipulation. Under Beall’s leadership, Franklin Park Zoo is the first zoo in North America to have successfully bred endangered Siberian cranes.

“Fred is a proven leader in the field and has worked tirelessly to promote, and foster, a better understanding of wildlife not only to the North American zoo community but to the international community as well,” Linehan said. “He has served as a mentor for so many staff members throughout the years, and he is always willing to lend a hand and share his knowledge. He is invaluable member of the Zoo New England team and we are thrilled that his hard work has been recognized with the highly prestigious Plume Award.”


Zoo New England manages Franklin Park Zoo in Boston and Stone Zoo in Stoneham. Both are accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). Zoo New England's mission is to inspire people to protect and sustain the natural world for future generations by creating fun and engaging experiences that integrate wildlife  and  conservation  programs,  research,  and education.