Early in April, Peter Hooper joined the LIVES project for the coming 12 months to support its livestock interventions.
“I am very grateful for the opportunity to work at ILRI, an organization that I have admired before. Both my wife Elaine and I look forward to our life in Ethiopia” He says.
Peter has a degree in veterinary science and a number of postgraduate degrees including a PhD (majoring in pathology). He earlier worked as a field and administrative veterinarian working mostly with cattle and horses in the northern tropical areas of Australia. He recounted the exciting times he spent working to eradicate contagious bovine pleuropneumonia, brucellosis and tuberculosis, and the measures required following the identification of bluetongue virus.
Afterwards, Peter served CSIRO, Australia’s premier research organization, as a research scientist. His research work included identification of a number of new or emerging diseases, notably a new rabies virus not then known in Australia, the new Nipah and Hendra viruses, and a viral cause of epidemic blindness in kangaroos. He has also worked on nearly all the major animal diseases, including foot and mouth disease, African horse sickness, Newcastle disease and highly -pathogenic avian influenza. Peter’s work has been communicated through various publications and international conferences. He was a key note speaker in two major conferences and has received a gold medal for his contribution to the public good. Peter has worked both in developed and developing countries over the years of his career. He has a long experience in preparation and delivery of ‘hands-on’ training courses for postgraduate veterinarians as well.
He will work very closely with Solomon Gizaw, the livestock expert at LIVES, for the next twelve months. Already, the project organized a field trip for Peter and other volunteers to Ejere district for them to get an overview of livestock intervention activities in the project site. The group visited communal grazing land as well as small scale dairy, poultry and backyard apiculture activities carried out by smallholders. They also visited a youth group involved in sheep fattening.
Peter is a keen bird-watcher so he is excited to explore the variety of beautiful birds in Ethiopia.
Peter’s contributions to the project is supported by the Australian Volunteers for International Development program.