Primate Researcher  What They Do

Just the Facts

Zoologists and Wildlife Biologists Career Video

Insider Info

dotIt's monkey business! Primate researchers, or primatologists, study all types of primates. These include everything from spider monkeys to the great mountain gorillas.

dotPrimatology is the scientific study of primates. It covers a number of different disciplines. Some researchers are interested in the anatomy, physiology and genetic coding of primates. After all, chimpanzees share 98 percent of our own genetic code.

Other researchers are interested in primate psychology and communication. Still other researchers are interested in species conservation and habitat concerns.

dotPrimate researchers may work at academic institutions and primate research centers run by universities or the government. They may also work at private research laboratories. Some primate researchers also work at zoos. They care for and study captured primates.

Researchers can also spend their time in remote locations around the globe, studying primates in their natural habitat. These studies often take place over long periods of time.

dotResearchers in institutions maintain regular office hours. But those doing fieldwork may have long and irregular hours that stretch over many months. You might be traveling to remote locations. Or you could be traversing over rugged terrain and living in sometimes not-so-good conditions. That requires physical strength and stamina.

At a Glance

Study chimps and other primates

  • This work can involve traveling to remote locations
  • You could work in labs, in zoos or in the field
  • Your degree can be in many areas: anthropology, psychology, biology or zoology