Peter Francis Timothy Zika (b. November 16, 1957 in Detroit, Michigan) is an American botanist and naturalist.


Zika was born the oldest of four children to Vaclav Jan Zika from the Czech Republic, an MIT engineer, and Countess Krystyna Helena Dunin from Poland. Two of his great-grandfathers were Rodryg Dunin, Polish agriculturalist, and Edward Werner, Polish vice-Finance Minister.

He received his undergraduate degree in botany at the University of Vermont in 1983, where he began documenting and improving collections of the Vermont flora. His original interest was in the alpine flora -- according to the University of Vermont website, he was the first person since Cyrus Pringle in the 19th century to certify the occurrence of many of the rarer species at high altitudes in Vermont, and there are several thousand sheets of mounted Zika material in the "Peter F. Zika Collection" at the Pringle Herbarium.[1]

Zika is currently a botanist at the University of Washington in Seattle, conducting research on how plants lure animals into dispersing their seeds. In the Pacific Northwest he conducts botanical inventories of National Parks and Nature Conservancy preserves, studies interactions between noxious weeds and native wildlife, and teaches wetland plant identification. He also often serves as a ship.s naturalist on various expeditions, which has enabled him to study the plantlife of other regions from Antarctica to the Amazon basin.

Selected works

Zika has published more than 80 scientific notes, articles and books, including:

Notable relatives


External links

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