Ep43 Amy Plowman on the importance of nutrition, collaboration, and learning from the wild

Episode #43

Dr Amy Plowman who is the head of conservation with the Bumblebee Conservation Trust, is part of the European Nutrition Group, and was at the Paignton Zoo and Wild Planet Trust for over 2 decades.

Amy shares how she came to study animal nutrition and remarks on the importance of diets in promoting optimal welfare. She gives some practical examples of nutritional problems and how she started looking at sugars and carbohydrates in the animal’s diets.

Amy explains different types of nutrients and deepens the conservation by sharing about the diverse adaptations for digestion in different types of animals. She talks about the cultivated food grown for humans than in most zoos is given to the animals due to availability and otherwise high costs and challenges accessing certain foods year-round. Amy discusses diseases related to certain diets and some solutions.

Amy shares a variety of her research on nutrition, as well as the use of thermal cameras and conservation, sharing on also on the prevalence of obesity, stereotypic behaviours, and behavioural effects of types of diets.

Sabrina and Amy discuss the challenges of zoo nutrition and also pellets and other prepared diets. She mentions the improvements in behaviour thanks to changes in diets, and solutions to the problems found.

Amy talks about the importance of collaboration in the nutrition field between academics, vets, feed companies, and others, and concludes with a funny story of animals mating.

Learn more about Amy’s research HERE

Learn more about the Bumblebee Conservation Trust HERE

Become a member of PAWS HERE


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