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Research is an integral component of successful zoo-based conservation.
Zoos Victoria is committed to conducting quality research that improves our capacity to conserve wildlife and enhances the welfare of animals in our care.
Research provides us with the knowledge to make informed decisions, and reveals ways we can improve our activities: from animal keeping to education, and threatened species recovery.
Consequently, our focus is on applied research that has tangible outcomes for the key areas of:
Zoos Victoria is currently engaged in over 40 research projects and we continue to identify and develop specific projects that address key knowledge gaps and aim to improve our conservation and animal care activities.
The Wildlife Conservation and Science team co-ordinates most research projects, including research conducted at our properties, in the field, and in partnership with other research organisations and zoological institutions. Our Community Conservation team also engages in research that allows us to increase the effectiveness of our behaviour change campaigns, visitor experiences and education goals.
Zoos Victoria welcomes research proposals from external organisations (e.g. universities, government agencies and other zoos). All proposals are evaluated against a set of criteria to determine their alignment with our research and organisational priorities with approval dependent on feasibility, resources and animal welfare and ethical considerations.
Zoos Victoria's Animal Ethics Committee (AEC)
Our AEC is made up of a range of representatives as required by the Australian Code of Practice for the Care and Use of Animals for Scientific Purposes. Zoos Victoria's AEC meet on a bi-monthly basis to assess and review the welfare and ethical considerations of research proposals where applicable.