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AZA issues FMD guidelines to zoos
Silver Spring, Md.-In an attempt to protect the domesticated wildlife at the zoo, the American Zoo and Aquarium Association (AZA) has compiled guidelines for its membership to use as preventative measures against foot-and-mouth disease.
Silver Spring, Md.-
In an attempt to protect the domesticated wildlife at the zoo, the AmericanZoo and Aquarium Association (AZA) has compiled guidelines for its membershipto use as preventative measures against foot-and-mouth disease.
The association, through its Animal Health Committee, partnered withthe American Association of Zoo Veterinarians to write the guidelines.
Prior to the recent epidemic in Britain, accredited U.S. zoos had establishedmeasures to prevent disease from penetrating zoos and aquariums, accordingto Sydney Butler, executive director of AZA. Those measures included quarantiningnewly arrived animals, testing their health prior to their addition to thezoo and conducting health maintenance checks daily. In addition, properveterinary care that emphasizes disease prevention is also a requirementof accreditation.
Some of the new guidelines are as follows:
1) Ask visitors who have traveled outside North America within the pastfive days not to visit any animal contact areas;
2) Halt or restrict access to special contact tours;
3) Restrict susceptible animals from walking in public areas; and
4) Ask zoo staff and other professionals traveling from FMD countriesto follow USDA instructions for travelers.