Tutors: Marcus Clauss, Clinic for Zoo Animals, Exotic Pets and Wildlife, University of Zurich; Sarah Depauw, University of Applied Sciences Odisee, Belgium; Anouk Fens, Apenheul Foundation, Apeldoorn, The Netherlands ; William Walldén, Kolmården Zoo, Sweden

Aimed at: Zoo staff with responsibility for nutrition and animal diets, academics working in the field of zoo animal nutrition, anyone with an interest in the field

Language: English

Taught hours: 7 (1 day)

Cost: EAZA members: €105 Non-members: €135

Location: Wellton Riverside SPA Hotel, Riga, Latvia

Course Aims:
The aim of this course is to provide theoretical and practical explanation about using regular zoo animal diets as the major component of behavioural management of zoo animals. The course will provide concepts and examples of how to incorporate feeding management in behavioural management (aka ‘enrichment’), and hopefully infuse enthusiasm to further develop this approach to contribute to the goal of increasing welfare for zoo animals.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of this course you will have:

1. Received an overview over the different aims of zoo animal nutrition and how this fits into modern  insights of animal welfare

2. Received inputs to understand the relevance of using the regular zoo diets for behavioural management

3. Practiced how to set behavioural goals (‘activity budgets’) for a variety of zoo animal groups

4. Learned about welfare assessments and practiced how to set indicators for good feeding practices aiming at zoo animals to experience positive emotions.

5. Discussed the interplay of zoo animal diet design and logistical requirements of behavioural management

6. Practiced developing measures of diet-based behavioural management

7. Experienced examples of diet-based behavioural management



  • Historical development of zoo animal nutrition
  • Zoo animal nutrition in welfare assessments
  • Setting activity budget aims
  • Developing physically and cognitively challenging feeding methods
  • Integrating behavioural management into diet plans

Image © Apenheul




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