This work traces the evolution of zoos from the private menageries of the ancient world to the corporate organizations of today. Drawing on interviews with zoo personnel, it considers how successful zoos are in preserving endangered species and the challenges of co-ordinating programmes.
In this book, Keekok Lee asks the question, "what is an animal, and how does our treatment of it within captivity affect its status as abeing?" This ontological treatment marks the first such approach in looking at animals in captivity. Engaging with the moral questions of zoo-keeping (is it morally justified to keep a wild animal in captivity?) as well as the ontological (what is it that we conserve in zoos after all? A wild animal or its shadow?), Lee develops her own original hypothesis, centred around the concept of "immuration"--defining this in contrast to domestication--and thereby provides a unique addition to the growingbody of work on animal ethics.
Modern zoos and aquaria are playing an increasingly active and important role in protecting and managing global biodiversity. Many zoos include wildlife conservation in their mission and have started changing the focus of their institutions in order to increase even further the benefits of their activities for in situ wildlife conservation. With these developments, the following searching questions are now being asked: What is the true role of zoos in conservation? How can they contribute more significantly to global conservation efforts? What are the unique attributes of zoos that can be applied in the conservation landscape? And should zoos be doing more? In parallel with this voluntary movement, legal requirements for zoos to support conservation in the wild are also becoming more stringent. This 2007 book defines a conservation vision for zoos and aquaria that will be of interest to those working in zoos, alongside practitioners and researchers in conservation.
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