Around 1989, CBSG founder and first chair Ulysses S. Seal (Ulie) decided it would be useful to inform those interested in CBSG about recent work, conservation news, and upcoming projects. So, the "Premier Issue of CBSG Newsletter" was printed and mailed out across the globe. Ulie wrote, "It is our goal that this newsletter serve as a timely means of communication and distribution of information among people with a special interest in the uses, resources, and problems of captive breeding as a tool for the conservation of endangered species."
By the next year, the newsletter was being distributed to over 3,400 people in 146 countries. 1,200 of those people worked in zoos and aquariums. That issue included a detailed history of conservation efforts for the Mediterranean Monk Seal (Monachus monachus), news of the developing re-introduction efforts of Arabian Oryx (Oryx Leucoryx) which today is a well-known conservation success story, and updates about Spix Macaw (Cyanopsitta spixii) conservation. Ulie wrote about CBSG's work, but also included updates about conservation news and regional zoo association activity.
Over the years CBSG News evolved from a twice-yearly publication about all of our activities to what it is now - detailed proceedings of our Annual Meetings published once a year. Now we have many venues for communicating with our networks and those interested in what we do - eUpdates, the Annual Report, newsletters, social media, the website, and this blog. Despite moving forward with these new tools, taking a look back is useful: it reminds us of lessons learned and progress made. Not only does this archive of CBSG News tell the story of CBSG history, but it also examines the triumphs and challenges in species conservation throughout the last 20 years.