Wildlife Advocates in the Wizarding World
It’s National Wildlife Day, and to celebrate, we’re looking at some of the most fearless protectors of magical creatures in the wizarding world. Among these are characters we’ve heard mentioned several times in the Potter books, but some are characters J.K. Rowling introduced after the series was published. Instead of talking about the most famous Magizoologists and naturalists such as Newt Scamander, Rubeus Hagrid, and Charlie Weasley, we’re looking at the more underrated characters. Everyone knows about Newt Scamander, but what about other wizarding naturalists?
1. Rolf Scamander
Great-grandson of the noted Magizoologist, Rolf Scamander is no less important. While Newt was focused specifically on protecting creatures that were persecuted, Rolf travels the world studying magical plants and creatures. Now that most magical creatures are protected, Rolf studies them. We don’t know much about Rolf, as he was introduced after Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was published. However, he appears to be one of the leaders of modern Magizoology. He was mentioned in the Quidditch Through the Ages audiobook, which says the 2014 World Cup experienced a magical creature crisis with the team mascots. Like his great-grandfather and his wife, Luna, Rolf seems to have a passion for studying the most unusual and strange creatures.
2. Luna Lovegood
While Luna has a tendency to search for the most ludicrous creatures – real or otherwise – she is a strong advocate for their protection. This stems from her father’s passion for unusual creatures as well as Luna’s own interest. While attending Hogwarts, Luna spent her free time with the Thestrals on the grounds. This further developed her passion for magical creatures, something that she pursued later in life. After leaving Hogwarts, she traveled the world with her husband Rolf. She is a wizarding naturalist and apparently discovered new species of plants and animals. I wonder if Luna now only studies the creatures she believes in or if she searches for other magical creatures too.
3. Gondoline Oliphant
Gondoline Oliphant was never a featured character in the Harry Potter series; however, she did receive her own Chocolate Frog card! This brave witch was one of the only people in history to study trolls and document their lives. Little is known of Oliphant by fans, except that she lived hundreds of years ago and is now considered a Magizoologist of her time. My favorite fact about Oliphant is that there is a statue of her at Hogwarts, one that Harry discovers in a passage while he’s sneaking around in his invisibility cloak!
4. Gulliver Pokeby
Gulliver Pokeby is most famous for his book, Why I Didn’t Die When the Augurey Cried. Similar to Oliphant, Pokeby was born hundreds of years ago, and he was an early Magizoologist. Pokeby has a Chocolate Frog card as well. During his lifetime, wizards lived in fear of the Augurey, a magical bird that was considered unlucky. It was believed that when the Augurey cried, death would follow. For this reason, the Augurey was shunned from wizarding society. Through Pokeby’s time spent with the bird, he was able to prove that the Augurey wasn’t a harbinger of death, only that its cries predicted rainstorms. Pokeby proved that there was really no reason to fear the Augurey, therefore changing the bird’s reputation. There’s even a Quidditch team, Liechtenstein National, that has an Augurey as its mascot!
5. Havelock Sweeting
If you’re looking for unicorns, Havelock Sweeting is the one to ask! Sweeting is the only noted unicorn specialist that the Potter fandom knows about. This is surprising, given that when Harry learned about unicorn behavior in his Care of Magical Creatures class, he learned that unicorns are skittish around human males. Yet Sweeting knew the most about them. Compared to everyone else included in this list, we know the least about Sweeting. Rowling mentioned him after the Harry Potter books were published, only saying that he has his own Chocolate Frog card. Sweeting lived several centuries ago. Due to his early advocating for such pure creatures, it makes sense that he would be immortalized in wizarding history.
Are there any wizarding naturalists and Magizoologists that we’ve forgotten? Feel free to share them in the comments below!