Ep30 Rebecca Ledger on the Five Domains Model for assessing suffering in cases of animal cruelty and the importance of bringing & bridging science into practice

2021 ibuzz podcast Feb 13, 2021

Dr. Rebecca Ledger is an animal behaviour and animal welfare scientist from Vancouver. Part of her work focuses on using behavioural assessments to assess animal welfare, and she has worked in the management of shelter dogs. She is regularly retained by humane societies, pet owners, and the Crown and Defence counsel across Canada to provide expert opinion in legal cases involving animal cruelty and animal behaviour.

Rebecca shares with us her rich background of experiences, her different jobs for universities, her consulting company, and the many years as a columnist, bringing animal welfare science to the general public. She enjoys teaching the most and talking to laymen scientific audiences about animal science. Rebecca talks about her studies and research mostly in companion animals, primarily dogs, with some cases revolving around cats.

Rebecca introduces us to her work as an animal expert in court, how she started, and some cases involving animal suffering. She states that...

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Ep29 Nicolas de Graaff on using the Five Domain Model in ZAA accreditation and the importance of asking questions

2021 ibuzz podcast Feb 06, 2021

Nicolas de Graaff has worked in the zoo industry for over 20 years and now he is the Accreditation Manager with the Zoo and Aquarium Association in Australia.

In this episode, Nicolas shares how he got started in the zoo field and how he came to the ZAA position, by being always flexible, open-minded, and working with his passion, joy, and commitment.

Nicolas brings to mind two rewarding and achieving histories about primates and recalls how all the experiences are a good way to learn from each other and together improve.

Nicolas introduces us to the implementation of animal welfare and legislation in Australia and New Zealand. He talks about his work facilitating the development and implementation of the ZAA Accreditation Program, which is primarily focused on the promotion of ‘positive’ welfare and based on the Five Domains Model. 

Nicolas presents the ZAA Accreditation program talking about the animal welfare assessments applying the Five Domains Model, details...

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Ep28 Sabrina Brando connects with animal welfare scientists & practitioners around the world to ask their top 3 considerations regarding animal welfare assessments

2021 ibuzz podcast Jan 30, 2021

Today's podcast is a combination of different animal welfare scientists from around the world, giving their perspectives, insights, and visions on animal welfare assessments. This podcast will feature:

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Ep27 Hannah Buchanan-Smith on evolutionary principles, learning from the wild, and making a case for positive change for animals

2021 ibuzz podcast Jan 23, 2021

Professor Hannah-Buchanan-Smith is the head of the Behaviour and Evolution Research Group, and Director of Human Animal Interaction Research Group in Psychology, University of Stirling, Scotland, UK.

Hannah introduces us to her work, the importance of understanding how animals have evolved, their capacities, and adaptations. She emphasizes that it is key to learn about how animals live in the wild to provide good captive conditions. She shares highlights from her research career such as why animals live in mixed-species groups, research on comparative colour vision, and animal welfare studies.

Hannah describes some early life experiences and encourages you to persevere in reaching your goals and not to give up. She tells us what she finds rewarding and keeps her motivated in her job.

Hannah and Sabrina discuss the important distinction between care and welfare. Hannah talks about continuous animal welfare assessments, and she presents in detail different approaches. For her, the key...

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Ep26 Amanda Embury on animal welfare assessments, teamwork, and continuous improvements

2021 ibuzz podcast Jan 16, 2021

In this episode Amanda Embury, whose career has spanned over 40 years in the fields of animal welfare and species management, shares insights on ongoing animal welfare assessments, teamwork and continuous improvements.

Amanda shares how she started her work in zoos, her study comparing behaviour of wild and zoo gibbons, and ongoing interest in enrichment and behaviour of zoo animals. She gives insights of her work in her current role as Senior Manager Animal Welfare and Life Sciences which leads the team that provides strategic directions for animal welfare, species planning, animal behaviour, training and enrichment.

This includes developing policies and key strategic documents such as frameworks for animal welfare and species planning, and tools to help assess practices including an Animal Welfare Survey and Species Assessment Tool.

Amanda shares snippets of the ongoing process of developing and maintaining an animal care and welfare program, founded on a code specifying criteria...

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Press release: Wellbeing for Everyone: Diversity, equity, and inclusion at AnimalConcepts

Media contact: Sabrina Brando
Founder and director
[email protected]


Press release


Wellbeing for Everyone: Diversity, equity, and inclusion at AnimalConcepts

Teulada, Spain (11 January 2021) AnimalConcepts has launched a new website last month to help you care for animals and yourself. This includes new pages not only dedicated to our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion statement but also to pro bono and scholarships opportunities so that ALL animals and people can flourish.

“The worldwide platform brings us together in ways most other organisations don’t, or can’t. What AnimalConcepts does is so important!" said Darren Minier, Assistant Director of Oakland Zoo. We see businesses as powerful tools for change, and we are dedicated to creating a more diverse, equal, and inclusive world for all. Diverse, multicultural perspectives make us and our lives better. Through our global activities, commitments, and partnerships,...

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Ep25 Jason Wark on ZooMonitor and assessing animal welfare

2021 ibuzz podcast Jan 09, 2021

In this episode, Dr. Jason Wark, an Animal Welfare Scientist in Lincoln Park Zoo’s Animal Welfare Science Program shares details and stories of how he and a wider team, manages and develops the ZooMonitor app.

Jason talks about his career and how he started in the zoo world. Jason describes the history of ZooMonitor – which was the brainchild of Dr. Megan Ross (iBuzz podcast #22) and was developed by Lincoln Park Zoo. It has grown as a data collection tool for recording and analysing behaviour to infer the welfare of animals.

Jason details many features of ZooMonitor including who is it for, and how to use it. He also gives us different examples of research that have been done thanks to this software, which is also available on mobile devices. Jason highlights the flexibility of this app for behavioural recording and different taxa. He thinks ZooMonitor has grown so quickly due to the accessibility and the increased attention to evaluating welfare and specifically...

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Ep24 Robert Young on the sciences and practices of animal care and welfare

2021 ibuzz podcast Jan 02, 2021

Robert Young is a Professor at University of Salford, at the School of Science, Engineering and Environment, and also a Chair in Wildlife Conservation. He has hundreds of publications in Wildlife Conservation, Animal Welfare, Animal Behaviour, Zoos and Anthropogenic Impacts.

Throughout the podcast, Rob talks about decades of research with over 50 species, on different continents, covering a wide variety of topics, studying animals both in the wild and in captivity.

Rob started his research during his Ph.D. on foraging behaviour in pigs and enrichment activities. He shares amazing and detailed stories of his projects in Brazil, including preparing animals for reintroduction into the wild, first studies in referential communication, vision and behaviour in primates, and sound pollution, among others!

Rob discusses with Sabrina the importance of learning and studying animals in the wild and applying that knowledge to improve the care of animals in zoos and other facilities where...

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Ep23 Frans de Waal on emotions and morality in animals

2020 ibuzz podcast Dec 26, 2020

Dr. Frans de Waal is a Dutch primatologist and ethologist. He is C.H. Candler Professor of primate behaviour in the Department of Psychology at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. He is also the director of the Living Links Center at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center at Emory. Frans is the author of many books of which he discusses during this podcast.

Frans discusses the attribution of emotion and morality to animals, which is still a subject of debate among animal scientists. For many, empathy and emotion have been thought of as a distinctly human experience. 

Frans compares feelings and emotions and shares with us different stories and experiences to illustrate emotional capacities in chimpanzees, bonobos, and other animals. He remarks that emotions can be found everywhere in the animal kingdom.

Frans and Sabrina share their thoughts on how scientists and academics should be interpreting their work for broader audiences and how we can get science into practical...

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Press release: AnimalConcepts launches new website

Media contact: Sabrina Brando
Founder and director
[email protected]

Press release


Be at your best to achieve excellence in wellbeing and conservation

Teulada, Spain (December, 22nd) AnimalConcepts has launched a new website to help you care for animals and yourself. This includes new pages dedicated to the Practical Animal Welfare Science (PAWS) platform which launched in April this year. This platform features many of the tools you need for animal care and welfare. It also includes individual and organisational care, so animals and people can flourish.

The worldwide platform brings us together in ways most other organisations don’t, or can’t. What AnimalConcepts does is so important!" said Darren Minier, Assistant Director of Oakland Zoo. Navigating the sea of animal care and welfare information is a challenge that can leave you feeling overwhelmed and frustrated, where do you start? Animal care and veterinary...

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