The National Academies will host a meeting 9-10 February 2022 to discuss the current understanding of animal welfare challenges in research on wildlife and biologically diverse vertebrate animal species.
Research to advance understanding of the ecology and biology of wildlife species is more important than ever as the world confronts issues ranging from biodiversity loss to the emergence of zoonotic diseases.
This workshop will focus on issues associated with the unique welfare challenges of conducting research with biologically diverse vertebrates living in varied habitats, for which guidance resources on wildlife research sometimes conflict and recommendations outlined in the current version of the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (8th edition) can present challenges.
The workshop will include presentations and panel discussions to explore topics and questions, such as:
- Understanding the growing needs of, and building strategies for, enhancing veterinary and Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) expertise on the health and welfare of wildlife and biologically diverse vertebrate animal species;
- Discuss resource options for improving the development and evaluation of IACUC protocols on research studies involving wildlife and biologically diverse vertebrate animal species interactions in captive and diverse natural environmental settings;
- Discussing bioethics associated with fieldwork practices (e.g., bleeding, euthanasia including thoracic compressions for small birds) and unique considerations for wildlife and biologically diverse vertebrate animal species; as well as welfare assessments amidst other considerations such as unique physiological, behavioral, environmental, and/or husbandry needs of wildlife and biologically diverse vertebrate animal species;
- Discussing federal, state, and local regulatory and management challenges associated with research on terrestrial and aquatic wildlife and biologically diverse vertebrate animal species;
- Discussing opportunities for enhancing collaborations between IACUCs and researchers studying wildlife and biologically diverse vertebrate animal species, including animal-environment interactions, anthropogenic effects on environment and animal life, and the relation between animal, environmental, and human health.
- Discussing strategies, synergies, and collaborations within and among the wildlife and biologically diverse vertebrate animal research, and biodiversity communities that could leverage national level research resources, identify knowledge gaps, and facilitate knowledge acquisition and sharing.
- Review the reasons and advantages for IACUC review of research using wildlife and biologically diverse vertebrate animal species, including regulatory compliance, public relations, and institutional protection.
Please visit NASEM’s Animal Welfare Challenges in Research and Education on Wildlife, Non-Model Animal Species and Biodiversity website for more information.