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Academics create app to improve elephant welfare
“Caring for elephants is an immense privilege but also a challenge” – Dr Lisa Yon.
The app is already being used by several zoos and wildlife parks.

Researchers at the University of Nottingham have designed an app to improve the welfare of elephants living under human care in zoos, wildlife parks, and other facilities.

The Elephant Welfare App collects data to allow keepers and others caring for elephants to monitor their welfare and identify any changes over time. Each time new data is uploaded, the app sends the user a detailed report containing graphs and tables.

The data is stored at the University of Nottingham, who hope it will become one of the largest repositories of data on zoo elephant behaviour in the world, allowing experts at the university to provide evidence-based advice to improve elephant welfare.

The app already has users around the globe including in the USA, Indonesia, and South Africa, as well as being used by 17 facilities in the UK and Ireland.

Dr Lisa Yon, who led the development team, said: “Both African and Asian elephants are now endangered in the wild and are at great risk of extinction. Zoo elephants may represent an important population for conservation of these species, and it is therefore important to ensure their wellbeing, but also contribute to their improved chances of survival so that they can continue to be enjoyed by future generations.

“Caring for elephants is an immense privilege but also a challenge. It is therefore essential that we identify what are the most essential, and feasible factors that can encourage the expression of natural behaviours and positive welfare.”

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Bristol uni celebrates 75 years of teaching vets

News Story 1
 The University of Bristol's veterinary school is celebrating 75 years of educating veterinary students.

Since the first group of students were admitted in October 1949, the school has seen more than 5,000 veterinary students graduate.

Professor Jeremy Tavare, pro vice-chancellor and executive dean for the Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, said: "I'm delighted to be celebrating Bristol Veterinary School's 75 years.

"Its excellence in teaching and research has resulted in greater understanding and some real-world changes benefiting the health and welfare of both animals and humans, which is testament to the school's remarkable staff, students and graduates." 

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News Shorts
RCVS HQ to temporarily relocate

The headquarters of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) is to move temporarily, ahead of its permanent relocation later in the year.

From Monday, 26 February 2024, RCVS' temporary headquarters will be at 2 Waterhouse Square, Holborn, London. This is within walking distance of its current rented offices at The Cursitor, Chancery Lane.

RCVS have been based at The Cursitor since February 2022, following the sale of its Westminster premises the previous March.

However, unforeseen circumstances relating to workspace rental company WeWork filing for bankruptcy means The Cursitor will no longer operate as a WeWork space. The new temporary location is still owned by WeWork.

RCVS anticipates that it will move into its permanent location at Hardwick Street, Clerkenwell, later on in the year.