The ZIMS for Care and Welfare project is now live in ZIMS!Funded by 23 members, the module will streamline access to critical key welfare indicators by enabling ZIMS to systematically track and monitor inputs and outputs of animal care. The community project will expand insights available to our community in support of animal care, behavioral, and environmental data for the species in our member institutions. Care and Welfare Indicators are provided globally, but each institution can define the parameters for each indicator and assign expected values/value ranges for each indicator to the taxonomic level. Indicators can also be added and defined at the institution level providing another level of flexibility. In the future, associations and Institutions will be able create defined Indicators for a species and then share them globally. These globally shared Indicators are then available to all ZIMS institutions for their individual use within the module. Sharing indicators will be helpful for Managed Programs that have certain criteria they would like evaluated in the population. They can also be valuable to streamline results across institutions, for example; if an institution is doing a study and wants other institutions to contribute. The module is also beneficial for meeting the needs of association’s accreditation standards for welfare. Data can be exported or viewed on the graph to show trends. Out of range flags for expected values can give insight to behaviors and other parameters that might need more evaluation.
Animal Care and Welfare Graphical View. Click here for larger image.Animal Weights, Body Condition Score and Health Status are available to view on the Care and Welfare graph whether the data was recorded in the Husbandry module or through the Care and Welfare templates. This will allow a snapshot view of these parameters over time. Sabrina Brando Msc., Director of Animal Welfare, WAZA said “This new animal care and welfare monitoring tool, seamlessly integrated in ZIMS, will allow zoo professionals to enter, monitor and track animal welfare over time using key indicators for both inputs and outputs in animal care. The tool is built around the 5 Domains’ Model. Four physical domains including Nutrition, Environment, Physical Health and Behaviour, and 1 Mental domain concerning negative and positive subjective experiences, which together give rise to an animal’s welfare status. ZIMS for Care and Welfare will be an important asset to the zoological community to promote optimal animal welfare.” More information on Care and Welfare is available in the help menu in ZIMS. Click here for an overview.