Integrate values and learnings
Our focus for March on the planetary wellbeing platform was on values and learnings integration, and how to develop our own morals, values, and code of ethics in the direction of positive change. Irma Verhoeven, Programme and Partnership Development Manager at Earth Charter International Secretariat, shares in this podcast her insights and experiences on why education plays such an important role in human behaviour changes and empowerment. AnimalConcepts is a proud Earth Charter International Partner since 2020.
Interested in education, conservation, and research? Want to learn about animal, planetary and human wellbeing? INTERBEING is the podcast series by AnimalConcepts that shares stories, experiences, science, and practices related to animal welfare and care, and the wellbeing of animal care professionals as well as the Earth Charter related to planetary wellbeing, and ultimately wellbeing for all. Listen to it HERE
The importance of...
Fish cognition and welfare
This month on the animal wellbeing platform is about animal cognition. This concept refers to a suite of mental processes of non-human animals, including perception, learning, decision-making, and memory.
Research on animal cognition has revealed that many species of animals possess complex mental abilities that were once thought to be unique to humans. For example, chimpanzees have been shown to be able to use tools, solve complex problems, and communicate with each other using a complex system of gestures and vocalisations. Birds have demonstrated the ability to use tools, recognise themselves in mirrors, and remember the location of hidden food caches.
Over the last decades, we have seen an increased interest in fish cognition and welfare. The ability to feel pain has gained interest in research, with several studies focusing on understanding pain experiences and welfare issues in fish. This Science into Practice resource of a review article by Lynne U....
Team Building with BITE & AnimalConcepts at Zoo de Bordeaux-Pessac
Team Building with BITE has been invited to work alongside AnimalConcepts in France at Zoo de Bordeaux-Pessac on a 9-day practical & team building project, specifically focused on designing for elderly animals and captivity building and staff training. TBWB was founded in 2015, under the expertise of Mark Kingston-Jones and Chris Hales in animal welfare and behaviour. The project aims to help increase animal welfare through species-specific feeders and furniture in animal facilities worldwide, to provide animal keepers with items for their animals that they are unable to create due to lack of time or resources, and to provide their corporate teams with unique and fun days with an incredible reward, and where their efforts will make a genuine difference.
Prior to the arrival of TBWB, AnimalConcepts worked with the animal care staff at the zoo on the holistic approach to animal wellbeing through the lens of...
At AnimalConcepts we collaborate with zoos, aquariums, sanctuaries, wildlife centres, universities, research facilities, companion, and farm animal organisations to support our collective goals of optimal wellbeing for animals, the people who care for them, as well as conservation, engagement, and research. Our purpose is rooted in and based on an interconnected culture of care and respect, serving people, animals, the greater community of life, and the planet we share.
We are seeking to grow our compassionate and creative team with an experienced storyteller. Our communications efforts include management of our social media pages including Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram, as well as creation and dissemination of e.g., newsletters, reports, events, booklets, and blog/vlog posts. Our goal is to share our stories and communicate our purpose to a wide community of animal care professionals, students, researchers, and others in the space of human, animal, and planetary wellbeing,...
International Women's Day
In recognition of International Women's Day, many organisations held events across the globe to celebrate the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. In AnimalConcepts, we explore the topics of gender equality and equity, discrimination and female empowerment across all platforms, promoting inclusion and respect for all beings.
BIAZA held a conference under the theme 'Women in Conservation', with speakers from institutions such as IUCN, Save the Rhino, Chester Zoo, Twycross Zoo, Paradise Wildlife Park and many more conservationists from the field. Max Norman, Animal Welfare and Conservation Coordinator at AnimalConcepts, attended the in-person event at Paradise Wildlife Park in the UK. Despite the cold weather and the surprise of snow here in South-East England, the event saw lovely a turnout of women – and several men! - from all over the country and beyond.
We heard of the...
Animal Sentience and Welfare: A Self-help Guide by Professor Emeritus John Webster
"For more than 50 years my thoughts and deeds have focused on animal sentience and animal welfare, viewed, so far as possible through their eyes, not ours. I offer this site as an introduction to these things, as I understand them, for all who care, whatever their age and experience. My approach is based on the principle of Reverence for Life. My rules of engagement are constrained by the principles of sound science. Together, these drive me to the conclusion that all life is worthy of respect and no species is better or more worthy of our respect than any other. My aim throughout this brief introduction to the philosophy, science and practice of animal welfare is not to suggest what you should think but to present structures upon which you can develop your own thoughts and interpret your experience. There are links for those who want to dig deeper. I have put these ideas on a website...
Enrichment office hours with ATA Founder Ryan Cartlidge
"Meeting our animal's needs can feel overwhelming and stressful at times! And at Animal Training Academy, our members know what this feels like. Therefore we were super grateful to have Sabrina Brando bring her decades of knowledge and experience to our community [in January] to help grow our skills, knowledge and confidence in this area – thanks so much, Sabrina!" said Ryan Cartlidge, Founder of the Animal Training Academy.
The Animal Training Academy (ATA) recently had a month dedicated to environmental enrichment. Founder Ryan Cartlidge shared a short example: "Sabrina and I discussed the importance of an excellent environmental enrichment program to help us meet our animals' needs! One example discussed was training penguins to use foot baths to help with bumble-foot (bumble-foot is lesions or sores on the underside of bird feet). We talked about how we could easily train a penguin/s to stand in a foot bath. However,...
Purposeful porpoise training at Fjord&Bælt: The first 25 years
A new paper on a historical overview of the Fjord&Bæl's (F&B) work on harbour porpoise care and wellbeing as been published. From the original idea of establishing a marine research institution to build animal care and training programs. This paper describes in detail the story of specific porpoises, from the moment they arrived at the centre, and how they engaged in husbandry and training routines. Sabrina Brando is one of the co-authors.
You can read more about the historical perspectives of F&B in the peer-reviewed journal Aquatic Mammals and download the paper HERE
Online webinar on global collaboration for animal wellbeing and conservation with University Centre Bishop Burton College
Last month Sabrina Brando connected with University Centre Bishop Burton College. Staff and students from the Human-Animal Interactions, Psychology MSc students as well as MSc Applied Animal Behaviour &...
Last week we released our new Foundations platform, which is designed to be a starting point for those who are new to the platform, need a refresher on how to use our library, or are looking for basic introductory information on the many concepts we cover across our three animal, human, and planetary wellbeing platforms.
As with all resources on all our platforms, these resources are designed to be used at any time, anywhere, when you need them. You can find a variety of materials like introduction to animal welfare assessments and the Earth Charter, guides on how to read scientific resources or how to be a transformational leader, and practical activities to apply your acquired knowledge. Every month we release new information and practical exercises that will help you to learn and understand different topics, with useful illustrations, glossaries, and more attractive resources.
We aim to provide content that suits a wide range of people from a wide range of backgrounds, no matter...
FOUNDATIONS platform launch
We are committed to providing accessible and affordable continued professional development and learning opportunities for all in the animal care and conservation community. This includes everyone from students to professors and from trainee animal care staff to CEOs: we aim to provide content that suits a wide range of people from a wide range of backgrounds, no matter how much experience you have.
That’s why we are developing and launching a brand-new platform as part of our interconnected learning experience through the AnimalConcepts membership: FOUNDATIONS!
Our new Foundations platform, bringing us up to 4 interconnected platforms, is designed to be a starting point for those who are new to the platform, need a refresher on how to use our library, or are looking for basic introductory information on the many concepts we cover across our three animal, human, and planetary wellbeing platforms.
As with all resources on all our platforms, these...