This chapter explains the identification and record-keeping of animals. It highlights the importance of keeping records such as maintaining health and welfare and aiding in conservation for captive management programmes. The chapter discusses the science behind binomial nomenclature and taxonomy. It includes a discussion on giving a temporary or permanent name to an animal such as the branding, rings, ear tags, and microchips. It looks at the degrees of intervention, invasiveness, and pain that results from these procedures. Next, the chapter shares the requirements of individual records in accordance with the Secretary of State’s Standards of Modern Zoo Practice (SSSMZP). Additionally, it notes that the International Species Information System (ISIS) has computer software formulated for zoo record-keeping.
Animal identification and record-keeping
This chapter focuses on animal welfare, which is defined as the study of an animal’s quality of life. The chapter lists environment, behaviour restrictions, and adaptation to captivity as factors affecting the welfare of zoo animals. It examines the indices used to evaluate zoo animal welfare such as life-history traits, self-directed behaviours, health, and biological processes. On the topic of meeting the needs of zoo animals, the chapter considers the concept of five freedoms, which encompasses the basic needs of captive animals ranging from malnutrition, discomfort, pain, expressing natural behaviours, and distress. The chapter highlights how legislation ensures that the best practice for animal welfare is implemented.
This chapter looks at the behaviour of animals as they respond to their environments. It specifically refers here to zoos. Ethograms are referred to as a catalogue of all kinds of behaviours seen in animals of a particular species. The chapter discusses major kinds of learning such as habituation, classical conditioning, operant conditioning, and imprinting. It highlights the importance of motivation in an animal’s behaviour and considers behavioural ecology, whichlooks into the evolution of behaviour within the context of an animal’s ecology. Additionally, the chapter talks about different sorts of mating systems such as monogamy, polygamy, and promiscuity. It compares animal behaviour in enclosures and in the wild.
This chapter focuses on the concept of conservation in zoos. Conservation of endangered species is one of the major goals of accredited zoos. The chapter defines conservation biology as the study of methods for maintaining biodiversity. It highlights the role of zoos in the conservation of biodiversity by referencing maintenance of captive stocks, support for in situ conservation, education, and research. The chapter differentiates between ex situ and in situ conservations. It lists the frameworks for zoo conservation such as the World Zoo and Aquarium Conservation Strategy (WZACS). The chapter presents reintroduction as one of the key goals of the many captive management programmes.
This chapter focuses on environmental enrichment. It begins by discussing the evolution of enrichment as a concept. It explains that behavioural enrichment aims to successfully stimulate desirable behaviours, increase activity, and provide an easy method for monitoring the health of zoo animals. The chapter highlights the aims and goals of enrichment such as generating behavioural change in target animals. It then lists the types of enrichment and their function: food-based enrichment, physical enrichment, sensory enrichment, social enrichment, and cognitive enrichment. Next, the chapter notes the process of evaluating enrichment. It highlights the challenges posed by novelty and habituation when assessing how long the enrichment is effective. Additionally, the chapter mentions the benefits of environmental enrichment such as promoting breeding and the interaction of an animal with its environment.
Feeding and nutrition
This chapter focuses on the feeding and nutrition of zoo animals. It discusses feeding ecology while looking at different categories of animals such as omnivores, carnivores, and herbivores. The chapter also discusses basic nutritional theory alongside the dietary requirements of animals, covering metabolizable energy. It introduces Zootrition asa major nutritional software package and database which includes an energy requirement calculating the basal metabolic rate (BMR). Additionally, the chapter alludes to the guidelines and legislation on feeding zoo animals in the UK and European Union. It then turns to discussing the storage, preparation, supply, and presentation of food given to animals. It highlights possible nutritional problems of zoo animals such as metabolic bone diseases, iron storage disease, malnutrition, mineral deficiencies, and obesity.
This chapter focuses on the health of zoo animals. It discusses guidelines and legislation regarding the health of zoo animals, by referencing legislation in the UK and the European Union, such as the Balai Directive, European Endangered Species Programmes, and Species Survival Plans. Additionally, the chapter highlights the role of zoo staff in caring for the health of animals. It also talks about preventive medicine and lists its different methods: quarantine, health examination, vaccination, hygiene, pest control, parasite control, foot care, and enclosure management. The chapter then mentions diseases of concern for zoo animals alongside possible treatments for diseases such as rabies, salmonellosis, and tuberculosis. It explains that diseases can spread by contact with conspecifics, free-ranging species or pests.
History and philosophy of zoos
This chapter explores the history, philosophy, and ethics of zoos. It starts with a basic definition of zoos before going through the history of ancient menageries. It mentions the Roman gladiatorial menageries and royal European menageries. Then, the chapter discusses the development of modern zoos by using various accredited zoos as examples, such as the Regent’s Park Zoo in London. It discusses the advent of ecosystem exhibits, bioparks, safari parks, and wildlife parks. Next, the chapter provides a history of aquariums. The genetic management of zoo animals to reduce inbreeding and to maintain genetic diversity may result in the animals’ sterilisation or removal from breeding groups. The chapter also looks into the conservation versus welfare ethics debate which gave rise to the argument of the anti-zoo campaign.
Housing and husbandry
This chapter looks at the accommodation and maintenance of animals in zoos. It explores the advancements in enclosure designs that cover the needs of animals, keepers, and zoo visitors. The chapter also examines the evolution of enclosure function, human-animal contact, basic housing, climate control, barriers, and safety. It explains the features of housing designed to aid husbandry. Husbandry is the process of caring for animals with routines and events. Additionally, the chapter explains the bottom-up and top-down approaches in relation to the impact of husbandry on captive animals.Next,it mentions the housing and husbandry guidelines that refer to zoo animals and that are compiled by a variety of agencies with differing degrees of comprehensiveness.
This chapter provides a brief introduction to the rest of the chapters in this book, ranging between animal management and animals’ experience in a zoo environment. It investigates the concept of the zoo and provides the definitions and features of zoos as given by the UK government legislation and the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ 1993 World Zoo Conservation Strategy. The chapter adds how the book uses information gained from accredited zoos and aquariums. It notes that most empirical studies about zoo animals are published in a small number of peer-reviewed journals. It also discusses the usage of scientific names and abbreviations throughout the text.
People in zoos
This chapter focuses on the impact and influence of people in zoos. It presents zoos as major attractions with reference to statistics on zoo visitors across the world. It also mentions the aims of zoos, which revolve around raising awareness and educating the public in subjects such as conservation and animals. The chapter then notes formal and informal ways of educating the public which include as the use of signs and keeper talks. Additionally, the chapter highlights the impact of zoo visitors on animals. Keepers are mostly perceived by animals differently than the visiting public. The chapter underlines the importance of training animals to adapt to people, referencing positive reinforcement training.
This chapter focuses on the regulatory framework that zoos have to operate within. It gives a brief introduction on legislation, laws, and global regulations. The chapter also discusses the UK’s devolved zoo legislation. It discusses various items of zoo legislation such as the 1973 Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) within the European Union (EU), the 1992 Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), and the International Air Transport Association’s Live Animal Regulations (LARs). Additionally, the chapter talks about the EU’s EC Zoos Directive, Balai Directive, Secretary of State’s Standards of Modern Zoo Practice (SSSMZP), and Zoo Licensing Act 1981. The chapter then gives an overview into zoo legislations outside Europe.
This chapter discusses zoo research. It highlights the significance of zoo research with reference to the discovery of political behaviours in chimpanzees. Moreover, the chapter notes the various ways that research is being carried out in zoos such as applied studies, field-based conservation, and operational researches. It also mentions the research conducted by zoo staff such as collaborations, routine data collection, and zoo records. The chapter then presents the methodological difficulties that affect zoo research and raises frequent questions asked amidst behavioural research. There is a lack of data independence in zoos especially in terms of time sampling, animals in the same enclosure, and activity budgets.
Small population management
This chapter focuses on small population management. It starts by examining the concept behind reproductive biology and then discusses genetics and endocrinology. Next, the chapter look at various relationships between animals such as mating systems, breeding, and parenting, while exploring the issues and constraints on reproduction in captivity. It notes behaviour competence as a way to describe the ability of an animal to express appropriate behaviour in a given situation. It then explains the process of monitoring the reproductive status of animals in captivity by referencing invasive and non-invasive methods. It looks at the usage of reproductive technology to help with animal reproduction such as artificial insemination (AI), in vitro fertilization (IVF), and embryo transfer. Additionally, the chapter tackles how to manipulate the reproduction of exotic animals.
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This chapter concludes the book. The evidence-based approach to zoo science extends beyond providing a basis for animal management and other activities. The chapter introduces possible careers in zoos such as zookeeper, zoo veterinarian, zoo veterinary nurse, assistant, and technician. It also presents the challenges for the future of zoos such as breeding, culling, and welfares. Additionally, the chapter explains how zoos will increasingly have to justify their decisions to cull surplus animals. It states that zoos need to understand that their duties of today are more than their commitment to conservation and education. Next, the chapter mentions how the process of data collection will continue to develop, especially for captive breeding of endangered species.
Geoff Hosey, Vicky Melfi, and Sheila Pankhurst
Zoo Animals starts with an introduction to the topic. It then moves to look at the history and philosophy of zoos: why do we have zoos? The book explains that, since there is a certain amount of regulation associated with zoos, zoos have to consider animal identification and record-keeping, housing and husbandry, and animal welfare in their work. It also covers environmental enrichment, small population management, conservation, health, feeding, and nutrition. Finally, the text examines people in zoos and looks towards future research.