WHA provides support to a national Zoo Animal Health Reference Group (ZAHRG), which was established in 2006 at the request of the Australian Chief Veterinary Officer (ACVO). The group facilitates communication and coordination between Australian zoos and governments on issues of national concern.
The group includes senior zoo veterinarians, representing their Directors, from the major Australian zoos, as well as veterinary representatives for small zoos and aquariums, and a representative of the ACVO from the Australian Government Department of Agriculture and Water Resources. The chair of the Zoo and Aquarium Association (ZAA) Veterinary Special Advisory Group is represented, and the ZAA Regional Veterinary Officer currently chairs the group.
Current priorities for the group are biosecurity, emergency disease preparedness and surveillance. Key achievements of the group are the development of a National Zoo Biosecurity Manual (NZBM) as a cooperative initiative of ZAA, WHA, the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources and the Australian Zoo Industry, and the review of the AUSVETPLAN Enterprise Manual for Zoos .
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Image Courtesy of Andrew Breed