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Unformatted text preview: even the slightest abrasion of illness, that animal is immediately transferred to
their vet, Dr. Ormond (Hall). When institutions take the health of each animal seriously, and take
measures to properly care for sick animals, it says a lot about the positive well-
being for these animals in
captivity. A vet is required to go through intensive schooling, and therefore, is more than qualified to
promote the general welfare of these animals in the best way possible.
In order to ensure the longevity and quality of life for captive animals, the Association of Zoos
and Aquariums, referred to as the AZA, has implemented and maintained a current set of guidelines
regarding the maximum number of inhabitants, their reintroduction to the wild, and the proper procedure Malloy 4
for these processes. Zoos and aquariums focus solely on the rehabilitation and breeding of endangered
or threatened species. Furthermore, the AZA updates a list called the Institutional Collecting Plan,
referred to as the ICP, every five years which includes a statement that justifies the number of animals
they allow these institutions to house. The ICP requires that each specie is evaluated upon each topic.
Among the many requirements, the top five include: status in the wild, existence and priorities of
cooperative management programs, ability to maintain the species in both a physically and
psychologically healthy environment, exhibit suitability (may include climate considerations), and need
for husbandry and other research” (Animal Care and Management). Such guidelines prove that zoos
and aquariums are held to the highest of standards in maintaining the welfare of the animals chosen for
The entire thesis of zoology is to provide broken and dwindling species a chance to reintroduce
themselves as healthy and sustainable populations. As more and more animals find themselves in
compromising situations, zoos and aquariums pride themselves with taking in as many animals as they
possibly can, but where do these institutions draw the line on captive inhabitants? The Association of
Zoos and Aquariums has clearly established rules defining the number of animals each institution can
care for. Kaitlyn Perišin, a Population Biologist for the Association of Zoos and Aquarium, states in
“Population Management Guidelines”, there is a specific equation “to familiarize yourself with your
current population and determine how many births/hatches the population needs to meet current
demographic goals” (qtd in Conservation). This exceeds the public expectation to determine whether
zoos and aquariums are upholding the utmost living conditions and welfare for the animals. Guidelines
include the institutions asking themselves basic questions dependent on the number of importat...
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- Fall '11