Moritz Eduard Pechuël-Loesche, was a German naturalist, geographer, ethnologist, painter, traveler, author, plant collector and Professor of Geography in Jena and Erlangen. Eduard was the eldest son of Ferdinand Moritz Pechuël, an innkeeper and mill owner, and Wilhelmine Lösche.
After school he joined the merchant navy and travelled widely during the 1860s including the Azores, Cape Verde Islands, the West Indies, the Americas and the seaboards and islands of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. He also visited the northern and southern polar regions and the Bering Strait.
Thereafter he enrolled at Leipzig University, studying natural history and geography, and gaining a Ph.D. in 1872. He accompanied Paul Güssfeldt on the Loango Expedition of 1873–76, playing a role in the founding of the Congo state and later writing a two-volume account of the expedition in 1882 and 1907, Die Loango-Expedition, ausgesandt von der Deutschen Gesellschaft zur Erforschung Aequatorial-Afrikas 1873–1876. Between 1884–85 he acted as Henry Morton Stanley's agent.