Enrichment and Animal Husbandry
What is animal enrichment?
Enrichment at the Little Rock Zoo is defined as the process of providing animals with choices and control while eliciting species appropriate behaviors that exercise the body and stimulate the mind.
The Little Rock Zoo's enrichment program focuses on the process of ensuring the animal's needs are being met and that each species has the opportunity to experience enhanced welfare - physical as well as psychological. Furthermore, psychological enrichment enables animals to develop and use their cognitive abilities while responding to environmental conditions using their special adaptations.
To make your own special contribution and enrich our animals' lives, you can purchase an enrichment item for a Zoo animal using our Amazon wish list! Click here to access this list and make a selection. Please be sure to notify us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you've made a gift so we can be on the lookout for it!
You can also donate directly to our enrichment program by clicking here.
PLEASE NOTE: Although enrichment is often made up of household items, these items go through careful preparation before being given to the animals. Please never give food or other items to any animal at the Zoo.
What is animal husbandry?
Animal husbandry involves the care of zoo animals. As caretakers for animals, part of our work is for maintaining the health and well-being of them.
The best way to care for animals at the Zoo is to understand the biology of the species in their natural environments, to understand behavior and physical adaptations, diet specifications, and social and space requirements.
Zoo routines that preserve animal husbandry involve separating animals when needed, shifting animals from one area to another, and training animals so they can undergo close visual inspection by keepers and treatment by veterinary staff.
So then, not only do animal husbandry practices attempt to create an environment that will support the animals’ growth and development but they also to mimic what life would be like in the wild for that animal.
You can donate directly to our animal husbandry fund by clicking here.
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