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European-style Zoos, American-style Zoos, Asian-Style Zoos, Australasian...

Discussion in 'General Zoo Discussion' started by Nikola Chavkosk, 1 Oct 2016.

  1. Nikola Chavkosk

    Nikola Chavkosk Well-Known Member

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    Hi zoochatters,

    Can we identify some styles of zoos in respect to every zoo-related thing, like for example size of zoo and size of enclosures, general design of zoo and management with space, species kept, etc.

    What would be most typical for:
    in particular for:

    -European zoo
    -American zoo (USA & Canada)

    but also for:
    -Asian zoo
    -Australasian zoo
    -South (Latin) American and/or African zoo

    Once I read from one zoochatter (I can't remmember from who (I think it was Zooplantman or jayjads2) and in what thread, that San Antonio zoo is ''most European zoo in the US'' because it is creative with it's limited available space).

    What about South Lake zoo or Valencia bioparc as ''most American zoo in Europe''? Or Berlin Tierpark and Berlin zoo or Dutch zoos as very typical European zoos?

    Of course this can be best explained by zoochatters who visited zoo in question in person.

    -I generally see European zoo as smaller than American zoo in size, but richer in species. Also more indoor enclosures in Europe than in North America.
    -European zoo, with more old buildings, with more concrete, and more liberal in respect to public opinion for particular zoo actions (like for example public euthanasia of zoo animal).
    -American zoo has wast open enclosures and better presentation of hoofed animals.
    -American zoo society seems that have more strict rules in respect to what zoos will keep certain zoo animal; situation in Europe is more resourceful - giving a chance to new zoos, who from recently were substandard, to keep some more charizmatic, endangered or rare-in-zoos-animals.
    -Australian zoos, are somehow mix or resembling more North American zoos with some Asian influence, but with very low diversity of species compared to European zoos.
    -(Far-East) Asian zoos are quite typical; small enclosures, crowding, a lot of tigers and orangutans.

    -Propose some examples of ''most-European zoo in America'' or ''most-American zoo in Europe'' or ''most Australian zoo in Europe (owning to australian species kept in the zoo), or ''most Asian zoo in Europe'' or ''most European zoo in Australasia (including New Zealand)'', or ''most Asian zoo in the US'' ... opportunities goes on... :) :)

    What are your thoughts on this? :)
    I know it is very subjective to judge, but can we try just for fun.
     
  2. Kakapo

    Kakapo Well-Known Member

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    I think that a big difference that you don't mention is that European zoos many times have an aquarium part (so they're called Zoo-Aquariums), while usually North American zoos doesn't.
     
  3. Nikola Chavkosk

    Nikola Chavkosk Well-Known Member

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    Many thanks Kakapo; I never knew this or haven't relized yet. And this is one of the main goal of this thread, to point out more typical features of zoos from continental regions.
     
  4. Coelacanth18

    Coelacanth18 Well-Known Member

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    Based on many pictures that I've seen of European zoos, naturalistic enclosures and immersion exhibits seem to be more common and popular in North America (Europeans: feel free to correct me if I'm wrong about that).

    I don't know if this is common in other regions, but in North America it is normal for zoos to open multi-million dollar "exhibits" (better described as exhibit complexes, I think). These are widely-advertised and serve as a way of putting zoos on the map and drawing visitors back to see new sights. These complexes are usually zoogeographic with a diverse range of species and a considerable amount of (usually overdone) theming. By these criteria, I would consider Chester Zoo's new "Islands" complex as perhaps the most American thing I've seen in a European zoo (again, I may be underestimating this trend in Europe).

    From what I can tell, indoor viewing is definitely more of a thing in Europe than in the States. The exception to this are great apes, for which indoor enclosures are often visible to the public. This is especially true of colder regions where the apes do not live outside year-round.

    Euthanasia of healthy zoo animals is frowned upon here, but it's more specific to mammals, birds, and reptiles. Euthanasia as a means of population control is common for amphibians, fish, and invertebrates.

    Accredited zoos in North America are often reluctant to send animals out to non-accredited institutions. In the US, most institutions that could meet AZA standards are already members; the remainder are mostly zoos that shouldn't even be open, let alone receive animals from zoos with better animal care standards. Don't forget that many abominable roadside menageries still thrive in the United States, as animal welfare laws vary by state and in many states they are quite lax. However, I will say that this is a very species-specific trend: many programs involve cooperation with non-accredited zoos and private individuals. For example, many hoofstock, and caprids in particular, are regularly exported out of their breeding programs to non-accredited zoos, safari parks, and ranches. Great apes, on the other hand, pretty much never leave accredited institutions, and if a zoo with great apes loses its accreditation, it will almost certainly lose its great apes along with it.
     
  5. Nikola Chavkosk

    Nikola Chavkosk Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for this interesting view Coelacanth18! As I can also read and see (photos in particular), I agree with your statements.
     
  6. Zooplantman

    Zooplantman Well-Known Member

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    I think it is not easy to see all zoos in Europe as following the same model. The typical zoo in the UK is quite different from the typical zoo in Germany. The typical zoo in the Netherlands is not at all like the typical zoo in Spain.
    North America is more homogeneous, IMO, with differences having more to do with finances than cultures or tastes.
    Are Japanese zoos really similar enough to Chinese zoos as to lump them together as "Asian zoos"? I don't think so.
    There are certainly local, even national differences. But not Continental styles. Besides, they all share information and influence each other.
    Perhaps a more interesting question would be Why aren't all zoos alike?
     
  7. gentle lemur

    gentle lemur Well-Known Member

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    Some of the reasons are obvious: climate, landform, population in catchment area (both resident and visiting), the date when the zoo was founded and the interests and intentions of the zoo's founders.
    One factor that does affect the character of a nation's zoos is the national legislation that affects them (local legislation may also have an effect in some places, particularly if the zoo is owned and run by a municipality). In the UK, many zoos are owned by charitable trusts which means that they have to 'good causes' as their aims (which is not a problem as the Zoo Licensing Act requires all zoos to promote conservation and education). The advantage of charitable status is that zoos can ask for voluntary donations on top of the standard minimum entry fee and then reclaim the income tax paid by on this sum by the donor: in addition these zoos do not have to pay Value Added Tax on any admission charges.
    I think that many American zoos benefit from corporate sponsorship and from the generosity of rich donors, which I presume is linked to US tax law. It always strikes me how many US zoo developments are named after private individuals. I presume that sponsorship helps to finance the large scale developments in American zoos, noted by Nikola and Coelacanth above. In the UK, I think that London Zoo is now the only one which has an exhibit named after a donor on its map, the Blackburn Pavilion (Bird House).
     
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  8. Tim May

    Tim May Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    And the Snowdon Aviary too.

    Personally, I think it is a shame that the old familiar names, commemorating donors, such as Mappin Terraces, Cotton Terraces, Clore Pavilion and Sobell Pavilions seem no longer to be used.
     
    Last edited: 27 Dec 2016
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  9. gentle lemur

    gentle lemur Well-Known Member

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    I had always reckoned that ZSL paid Snowdon for the concept, rather than the other way around. I agree about the other names, but all those structures have been changed quite considerably. Even Lord Paul's million pounds is no longer recognised, and that was much more recent. The only one I wasn't sure about was Barclay Court, but who wants an empty space named after them?