This article focuses on the shared history of Frankfurt Zoological Garden and Airport, developing an infrastructural perspective on the rise of behavioral thinking in postwar environmental sciences. It shows that technical and logistical environments, such as seaports, airports, train stations, and highways, shaped the way environmental scientists and a broader public conceptualized animal behavior. Similar to ergonomics and human factor engineering in the 1950s and ’60s, human-made spaces and interiors became central reference points for developing and testing new ideas on the interaction between animals and “the environment.” Further, airports were sites of knowledge transfer between practitioners, including animal traders, care attendants, veterinarians, logistics experts, and scientists. The first part of the article draws on the works of biologist and Frankfurt’s Zoo director Bernhard Grzimek, who made excessive use of air cargo to ship wild animals to Frankfurt. The second part traces the emergence of new spaces for animals at Frankfurt Airport in the 1950s—such as the “animal room” in the cargo area. The third part of the article uncovers the hidden networks of animal traders and shipping companies that made Frankfurt Airport a major international hub in animal air cargo. Lastly, the article argues that hands-on experience of animal behavior, such as that conducted in airports like Frankfurt, is part of a broader pattern of environmental knowledge production in in the twentieth century—in close proximity to infrastructure projects.

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