A digital animal welfare programme has been launched in Japanese by the UK animal welfare charity Wild Welfare.
Produced in collaboration with The Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare Education (JMICAWE) at the University of Edinburgh, the free online programme focuses on working with captive wildlife.
The programme delivers bite-sized online modules on animal behaviour, animal welfare needs and animal enrichment, among other topics, is accessible on smartphones, tablets and computers, and can be taken as a complete course, or one module at a time.
Simon Marsh, Wild Welfare's acting UK director, commented on the resource: “Ensuring animal welfare resources are available in people’s native languages is vital in helping to make certain our charity’s work really has an impact on captive wildlife in all corners of the globe.
“The Wild About Welfare programme has been designed to upskill staff working with wild animals in captivity and give them the knowledge to be able to deliver good care and welfare.”
Participants of the programme will be provided with practical learning exercises, and will be encouraged to consider species' biology, along with individual preferences, to assist in making positive and productive decisions for each animal's welfare.
Keiko Yamazaki, executive director of the Animal Literacy Research Institute and member of the Japanese Coalition of Animal Welfare (JCAW) said: “The issues pertaining to captive wildlife in Japan are many. There is no legal definition of zoos. Exotic pets are popular which helps to boost the illegal wildlife trade.
“Educating all those involved in the care of wildlife as well as the general public on the welfare of these animals is of paramount importance to the nation.
“The digital learning program and its accessibility will indeed help to accelerate this education.”