About Jonathan

Jonathan Balcombe with a rat friendJonathan Balcombe was born in England, raised in New Zealand and Canada, and has lived in the United States since 1987. He has three biology degrees, including a PhD in ethology (the study of animal behavior) from the University of Tennessee, where he studied communication in bats. He has published over 45 scientific papers on animal behavior and animal protection.

He is the author of four books:

The Exultant Ark: A Pictorial Tour of Animal Pleasure (University of California Press, 2011)

Second Nature: The Inner Lives of Animals (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010)

Pleasurable Kingdom: Animals and the Nature of Feeling Good (Macmillan, 2006)

The Use of Animals in Higher Education: Problems, Alternatives, and Recommendations (Humane Society Press, 2000)

He is currently at work on a new book about the inner lives of fishes, and a novel titled After Meat.

Formerly Senior Research Scientist with the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, Jonathan is currently the Department Chair for Animal Studies with the Humane Society University.

Based near Washington, DC, in his spare time Jonathan enjoys biking, baking, birdwatching, piano, painting, and trying to understand his two cats.