Explore the principles of exotic animal ownership and management: Unit 14 Management of Exotic Animal Species Assignment, SHC, UK

University St Helens College (SHC)
Subject Unit 14 Management of Exotic Animal Species

Unit Learning Outcomes

LO1 Explore the principles of exotic animal ownership and management.

Vocational Scenario

The trade in and keeping of exotic animals has become more popular in recent years. Exotic animals have a range of specific needs and requirements for which public concern for welfare has significantly increased. Legislation strives to allow for ethical regulation in the trade and improve welfare standards when in captivity.

Belfast Zoo opened it’s 55acre site in 1934 and is home to around 150 species with over 1,000 individual animals. Belfast City Council fund the Zoo with ratepayer’s money to make up for any financial deficit. Since 2015, there have been calls for the zoo to close from some councilors (mainly for financial reasons) and public opinion is divided on the ethics of having animals in zoos, especially non-indigenous exotic species, with regards to their quality of life.

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This debate has highlighted the complicated and broad issues surrounding exotic animal trade and ownership in Northern Ireland, not only in Belfast Zoo but also in other exotic collections, such as exhibition for profit, petting farms, educational organisations and also the retail sector.

With this in mind, Belfast City Council has asked for you to produce a report on exotic animal trade and ownership of collections. The title of your report should be “An analysis of the welfare legislation for exotic animals in Northern Ireland” with a focus on Belfast zoo.

This report is to be provided to the Stormont Assembly prior to their debate on Belfast Zoo and must answer the wider questions of “Why are exotic animals kept in captivity? How protected is the welfare of exotic animals in Northern Ireland?” before providing discussion of the zoo directly.

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