PDRT is headed By Dr Gregory Rasmussen who has been exclusively working with this highly endangered carnivore since 1989. Currently his core team comprise MK Moyo who is his field technician tracker and right hand man as well as his Zimbabwean graduate students Tendai Nekatambe who is doing her Masters at NUST University Bulawayo, Tatenda Muchopa, and Tafadzwa Shumba.
The mission of the organization is to conserve Painted Dogs using data and research as the guiding tool. It is also intended that through the research Zimbabwean graduate d students will be mentored with the intention of creating a generation of motivated, field competent, and passionate conservation biologists.
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Greg Rasmussen (born in London, UK) is a British Wildlife conservation biologist who has studied the African Wild Dog for over twenty years, working in the Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe. He is the founder and Director of the Painted Dog Conservation project.
Rasmussen was born in London but moved to Zimbabwe with his parents when he was eleven years old where he attended Falcon College. This was followed by a spell in the merchant navy. In 1988 Joshua Ginsberg offered him a job observing animals in Hwange National Park. He established the Painted Dog Conservation project in 2002.
In 2003 he was involved in a light plane crash which left him severely injured and alone in the African bush. He survived and was eventually rescued. He almost lost his feet but doctors saved them. He is 3 inches shorter now. The story of his survival is featured in season one of 'I Shouldn't Be Alive', a documentary series broadcast on the Discovery Channel in the United States in an episode entitled "Jaws of Death". In the United Kingdom it was broadcast as "Thrown to the Lions" on Channel 4 where the series is called 'Alive'.