There is an increasing concern for improving the well-being of marine mammals held in human care for research, display, and rehabilitation. Therefore, more effort is progressively put into assessing animal stress. The ability to measure stress is indeed necessary for identifying the least stressful methods for capturing and handling marine mammals. Circulating cortisol levels are accepted as a sensitive indicator of acute stress in marine mammals, particularly in relation to capture and handling. This study presents the first long-term monitoring of cortisol levels in four harbour porpoises (an adult male, an adult female and two juvenile females) held in human care.
Links to some practical examples
Unedited transcript of the video above
"We are all in the welfare department. So it's really interesting. Sometimes I hear these things about, you know, well, we should talk to the welfare department, or we should, you know, talk to the welfare scientist. And of course, being a welfare scientist and animal welfare scientist is a professional in itself. You know, everybody has their specializations. But it is important to know that we are all in the animal care and welfare department. So sometimes, it's also about, well, let's create a special issue around animal welfare. But everything that we do is about animal wellbeing. Everything that we do, revolves around care, right? So there's no separation with regards to when we're talking about breeding conservation efforts, feeding the animals cleaning, the human-animal interaction, everything is animal care, and well being in the sense that it has an effect. And whether that's a good one or a bad one, you know, depending on how...
Today we're celebrating these amazing, unique animals with some useful resources to help you care for vultures.
Download the free interactive PDF of our flyer HERE
Check out Hawk Conservancy Trust to learn more about vultures!
Access to all our webinars, resources and materials, become a member of PAWS HERE
Media contact: Sabrina Brando
Founder and Director
A new platform, all dedicated to elephants, and a collaboration between Global Elephant Care and AnimalConcepts, is launching soon!
Coming from a culture of care and compassion and combining the most up to date scientific literature and best practices, we strive to improve standards and promote optimal wellbeing for elephants in all types of human care globally.
"Gerry & Sabrina trumpet in excitement about this new platform for elephants and peoples around the world!"
Promoting positive wellbeing and flourishing is at the core of what contemporary zoos, sanctuaries and all other facilities caring for elephants strive for. The aim of this platform is to provide a progressive, safe, and active space for all people involved in caring for elephants anywhere.
Through this online continued education platform, both...
Media contact: Sabrina Brando
Founder and Director
AnimalConcepts is delighted to share an event in collaboration with Omuta City Zoo that is now available online as a recording on YouTube. This event was held live on 16 June 2021. We would like to thank Omuta City Zoo again for the invitation!
The webinar titled 'Animal welfare is a goal and an end in itself' invited the audience to consider an animal's life 24/7 across lifespan. To think about animal wellbeing connected to, but also independent, from other the goals. It highlighted that while other goals such as e.g., conservation, education, and research are important - sometimes called 'greater goals', focusing on the animals and their wellbeing is a goal in itself and it is a greater goal in itself too.
The webinar was fully booked, attracting 50 participants and more views are expected via the online...
By Holly Molinaro & Sabrina Brando
Usually, we release one Science into Practice (SiP) resource every week. For this month, we have a little bonus for you. Two SiPs in one week! You can access all materials via the PAWS platform, not a member yet? Become one HERE or sign up for more blogs like this via our newsletter!
This week, both SiPs are about fish welfare, pain and intelligence.
One of the reasons for this is that we would like to discuss and cover a wide variety of topics and stances, including the ones we do not necessarily adhere to. We should make all efforts to not fall into the trap of excluding information just because it does not fit our worldview, philosophy, or opinion, but rather discuss openly and put forward our ideas, thoughts and feelings, bringing in all the science and other perspectives available to have a deeper conversation.
(1) Rose (2007), Anthropomorphism and ‘mental welfare’ of fishes
(2) Sneddon (2019), Evolution of...
Media contact: Sabrina Brando
Founder and director
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...
Wellbeing for you and your animals is too important not to get right
At AnimalConcepts we help you be at your best to achieve excellence in animal care and welfare. The Practical Animal Welfare Science 'PAWS' platform, is the first e-learning platform combining human and animal wellbeing science and practice. It allows you to get the education and continuous personal development (CPD) opportunities as well as tools and practical resources you need so you and your animals can flourish.
Navigating the sea of animal care and welfare information, and caring for yourself while giving care to others is a challenge that can leave you feeling overwhelmed and frustrated, where do you start?
"My vision is that the PAWS platform is one of the go-to resources that animal care professionals can use to learn, engage, and enjoy in our collective commitment to serving and caring for animals and for ourselves. See it as a short of wellness atlas where you can find all kinds of...
I watched an episode of Royal Pains, an easy-going and fun series about a concierge doctor’s practice called HankMed in the Hamptons. When answering the phone they say: “How can we make you feel better today?”.
In the past when I was working full-time in a zoo or aquarium I did not always pay attention to all the details, because I was so swamped with work and full filing the needs of our visiting public, safety etc. or because I did not know otherwise. For example, I did not always notice that the bedding material was less in quantity or not of good quality and the nest building of our small rodents was OK but not ideal.
With the marine mammals like dolphins, seals, sea lions and walruses we used some enrichment devices but most objects would only float and were hard to take to the bottom or to interact within the water column. By paying more attention to details, to the quality of e.g., interactions, relationships or sleep, as well as the number of opportunities,...
We are all thinking about animal care, including how we interact with them and ways we can impact their wellbeing ranging from negatively to positively, i.e., the quality of care. To think about how we do what we do is impacting them, or likely, or possibly impacting them.
One of the questions, or rather perhaps, exercises, I like to think about and engage in is: what it would be like to be in their position? Where they live, with whom, what opportunities and affordances they have, etc. This is a difficult thing to do and not without interpretational hurdles and problems, I know, I already hear the word anthropomorphism ringing in my ears.
I bet anyone working with animals would love to be able to be that animal or species or individual for 1 day (or longer)! To experience e.g., what the world is like for them, how do they experience varies things in their lives, how and what they think about, how do they feel and experience their world emotionally? Can we just be Dr...