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An Introduction to the Science and Technology

As species extinction, environmental protection, animal rights, and workplace safety issues come to the fore, zoos and aquariums need keepers who have the technical expertise and scientific knowledge to keep animals healthy, educate the public, and create regional, national, and global conservation and management communities. This textbook offers a comprehensive and practical overview of the profession geared toward new animal keepers and anyone who needs a foundational account of the topics most important to the day-to-day care of zoo and aquarium animals. The three editors, all experienced in zoo animal care and management, have put together a cohesive and broad-ranging book that tackles each of its subjects carefully and thoroughly. The contributions cover professional zookeeping, evolution of zoos, workplace safety, animal management, taxon-specific animal husbandry, animal behavior, veterinary care, public education and outreach, and conservation science. Using the newest techniques and research gathered from around the world, Zookeeping is a progressive textbook that seeks to promote consistency and the highest standards within global zoo and aquarium operations.   

688 pages | 85 halftones, 55 line drawings, 48 tables | 8 1/2 x 11 | © 2013

Biological Sciences: Anatomy, Behavioral Biology, Conservation, Natural History


Zookeeping: An Introduction to the Science and the Technology is a collaborative effort, with 73 contributing authors and 7 contributing artists, a diverse group of experts from varying backgrounds and regions of the world. . . . The comprehensive array of content covers every aspect of successfully running a modern zoo. Ostensibly a handbook for new zookeepers, this book is in fact a resource which will prove useful to even the most seasoned zoo professional. . . . By producing this wealth of information covering hundreds of best practices unique to the zoo field, Irwin [, et al. have] filled a huge void in our profession. It seems fair to say that the future of zookeeping will be greatly improved by Irwin [, et al.’s] work.”

Norah Farnham | WAZA News

“Excellent. . . . There are very few books dedicated to zookeeping and many of them are actually institutional manuals which often do not get circulated to other zoos, particularly zoos in other lands.”

Sally Walker | ZOO’S PRINT: Magazine of Zoo Outreach Organization

“The editors set out to develop a comprehensive textbook to train new and aspiring professionals for work in zoos and aquaria, and they succeeded. . . . It not only covers care and husbandry issues in detail and breadth, but also goes far beyond science and technology in its detailed discussions of management, workplace professionalism, education, safety for animals and people, and the changing roles of zoos in society.”

Conservation Biology

"This new book . . . will certainly become the reference ’bible’ fo the zoo and aquarium professional."

Herpetological Review

"An impressive list of contributing authors, representing much of the western knowledge of the role of a zookeeper. . . . . The range . . . has allowed the production of a work of clear value to the zookeeping world."

Animal Welfare

Zookeeping is destined to become the ‘must have’ comprehensive resource for the zoo industry. It offers an abundance of information and knowledge for the novice zookeeper and the seasoned veteran alike. From the history of zoos to animal welfare, training, husbandry, and beyond—to the future of the zoological institution—as we know it. Zookeeping coversit all, replacing dozens of single-subject books. The contributors are among the most respected and recognized zoo experts, and they include nearly every conceivable subject of interest to those in the field.”­

International Congress of Zookeepers

“Zoos and aquariums may vary in size and design, but what should always remain consistent is the quality of animal care.  Zookeeping will contribute greatly to the professional development of new animal care professionals by providing core information and best practices, helping to develop and enhance keeper knowledge at the entry level. Mark Irwin, his colleagues, and more than seventy contributors have made a great contribution to fundamental animal care. The American Association of Zoo Keepers is proud to include this volume as part of its standardized instruction for the professional development of animal care professionals.”

Bob Cisneros | American Association of Zoo Keepers

“Initially, Zookeeping was meant to be for zookeepers only. The final product, however, is probably the most comprehensive guide to what you should know about running a good zoo business ever published. Animals are at the center of this book: it is about their care and conservation. For that purpose, top experts from the zoo business provide insight into animal husbandry, diseases, behavior, taxonomy, the legal situation, conservation, and international cooperation—to name just a few subjects. All those issues make a modern zoo and help preserve biodiversity worldwide.”

Gerald Dick | World Association of Zoos and Aquariums

“One of the first books that has endeavored to embrace all relevant practical aspects for the benefit of anyone aspiring to become a modern zoo professional, right down to the first challenge of getting one’s foot in the door.”

Neil Bemment | Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society

Table of Contents


Part One  
Professional Zookeeping

1. The Profession of Zookeeper
Ken Kawata
2. Professionalism and Career Development
Jacqueline J. Blessington
3. Communication and Interpersonal Skills for Keepers
Judie Steenberg and Mark D. Irwin

Part Two
Evolution of Zoos

4. Zoo History
Josef Lindholm III
5. Today’s  Zoos
Gordon McGregor Reid
6. Animal Ethics and Welfare
Joseph C. E. Barber and Jill D. Mellen

Part Three
Workplace Safety and Emergencies

7. Workplace Safety
Ed Hansen
8. Emergency Readiness and Crisis Management
Donald E. Moore
9. Basic First Aid
Andrew A. Birr

Part Four
Zoo Animal Management

10. Daily Routine and Basic Husbandry
John B. Stoner
11. Taxonomy
Gary L. Wilson
12. Anatomy and Physiology (Part 1: Invertebrates)
Douglas P. Whiteside
13. Anatomy and Physiology (Part 2: Vertebrates)
Douglas P. Whiteside
14. Stress and Distress
Murray E. Fowler
15. Physical Restraint and Handling
Murray E. Fowler
16. Nutrition
Eduardo V. Valdes
17. Recordkeeping
Jean D. Miller
18. Identification
Erika K. (Travis) Crook
19. Reproduction
Linda M. Penfold
20. Population Management
Linda M. Penfold
21. Management of Neonatal Mammals
Harmony B. Frazier, Janet Hawes, Karla J. Michelson
22. Management of Geriatric Animals
Cynthia E. String field
23. Transportation and Shipping
Andrea Drost
24. Exhibit Design
Patrick R. Thomas
25. Zoo Horticulture
Jay H. Ross

Part Five 
Zoo Animal Husbandry and Care

26. Husbandry and Care of Small Mammals
Donald E. Moore and Michelle R. Farmerie
27. Husbandry and Care of Hoofstock
Brent A. Huffman
28. Husbandry and Care of Carnivores
Adrienne E. Crosier and Michael T. Maslanka
29. Husbandry and Care of Primates
Colleen McCann
30. Husbandry and Care of Elephants
Chuck Doyle and Daryl Hoffman
31. Husbandry and Care of Marine Mammals
Gerard H. Meijer
32. Husbandry and Care of Birds
Ted Fox and Adrienne Whiteley
33. Husbandry and Care of Reptiles
Aaron M. Cobaugh
34. Husbandry and Care of Amphibians
Andrew M. Lentini
35. Aquarium Science: Husbandry and Care of Fishes and
Aquatic Invertebrates
Bruce Koike
36. Husbandry and Care of Terrestrial Invertebrates
Tom Mason and Aaron M. Cobaugh

Part Six                                         
Animal Behavior, Enrichment, and Training

37. Introduction to Animal Behavior
Michael Noonan
38. Applied Animal Behavior
B. Diane Chepko-Sade
39. Animal Behavioral Concerns
Joseph C. E. Barber
40. Enrichment
David J. Shepherdson
41. Enrichment Programs
Tammy M. Root
42. Operant Conditioning
Gary L. Wilson
43. Husbandry Training
Ken Ramirez

Part Seven                                                
Veterinary Care

44. Principles of Animal Health
Mark D. Irwin
45. Veterinary Care and Technology
Tracey L. Anderson
46. Zoonotic Disease
Scott P. Terrell
47. Preventive Medicine
Noha Abou-Madi
48. Veterinary Diagnostics
Cynthia E. String field
49. Medications and Dose Calculations
Mary O’Horo Loomis and Tony Beane
50. Chemical Restraint
Mark D. Irwin

Part Eight                                                 
Education, Outreach, and Public Interaction

51. Educating Entertainingly: Basic Interpretation
D. Andrew Saunders
52. Public Relations in Zoos and Aquariums
Jason A. Jacobs

Part Nine                                                  
Conservation Science

53. Conservation Biology
Gerald Dick and Markus Gusset
54. Research in Zoos
Rebecca E. Spindler and Joanna Wiszniewski
55. Cooperative Science Programs
Candice Dorsey, Debborah E. Luke, and Paul Boyle
56. Going “Green” in the Workplace
Beth Posta and Michelle E. S. Parker
57. Wildlife Rehabilitation
Erica Miller and Sandra Woltman

Part Ten
Government and Legislation

58. Introduction to Regulation of Zoos and
John B. Stoner, Mark D. Irwin, and Aaron M. Cobaugh
59. CITES and IATA
Andrea Drost
60. Government and Legislation in Africa
Dave Morgan
61. Government and Legislation in Asia
Sally R. Walker
62. Government and Legislation in Australia
Sara F. K. Brice
63. Government and Legislation in Canada
Andrea Drost and William A. Rapley
64. Government and Legislation in Europe
Lesley A. Dickie and Miranda F. Stevenson
65. Government and Legislation in New Zealand
Tineke Joustra
66. Government and Legislation in the United States
Steve Olson
Appendix 1: Further Readings
Appendix 2: Recommended Web Links
Appendix 3: Professional Colleges and Universities in the United States

List of Contributors

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