Jeff Foster has spent his whole life around wild and exotic animals. He grew up as the son of a prominent zoo veterinarian, giving him experience caring for and managing animals from an early age.
Jeff has worked in the marine mammal field for 45 years. He got his start working for SeaWorld and the Seattle Marine Aquarium at the age of 15. He has worked in all facets of the marine mammal field including capture, animal husbandry, training, rehabilitation, research and reintroduction. These days, he travels the world helping to conserve and protect wild dolphins and other marine mammals.
Jeff has been credited for developing the first successful formula for a neonate cetacean as well as been instrumental in developing behavior enrichment devices for captive marine mammals. Jeff oversaw the humane captures of oiled sea otters during the Exxon Valdese oil spill. He was Director of Field Operations and Research for the Keiko Project and oversaw the day-to-day management of the project. He also oversaw the capture, rehab and successful reintroduction of Springer, the orphan killer whale. He was responsible for the Tom and Misha Project, the first successful reintroduction of bottlenose dolphins back into the wild. Jeff was instrumental in the developing the LIMPET tags in the study of marine mammals in the wild.
Jeff has received numerous accolades and awards for his contributions to the marine mammal field, including NOAA’s Environmental Hero of the Year 2006, received for his dolphin rescue work during hurricane Katrina and the tsunami in Southeast Asia.