Fossil Rim Wildlife Center Earns Prestigious accreditation

Special to the
Kelley Snodgrass, executive director, and Kristen Hannah, executive coordinator.

The Association of Zoos & Aquariums has announced that Fossil Rim Wildlife Center was granted accreditation by AZA’s independent Accreditation Commission.

“Less than 10% of animal facilities registered with USDA have achieved AZA-accreditation, so Fossil Rim is truly a leader in the profession,” said AZA President and CEO Dan Ashe. “AZA-accreditation signifies Fossil Rim Wildlife Center’s active role in protecting our world’s wild animals and wild places while providing exemplary animal care and meaningful guest experiences.”

To be accredited, Fossil Rim Wildlife Center underwent a thorough review to make certain it has and will continue to meet ever-rising standards in categories which include animal care and welfare, veterinary programs, conservation, education, and safety. AZA requires zoos and aquariums to successfully complete this rigorous accreditation process every five years in order to be members of the Association.

The accreditation process includes a detailed application and a meticulous on-site inspection by a team of trained zoo and aquarium professionals. The inspecting team observes all aspects of the institution’s operation, including animal care and welfare; keeper training; safety for visitors, staff and animals; educational programs; conservation efforts; veterinary programs; financial stability; risk management; visitor services; and more. Finally, top officials are interviewed at a formal hearing of AZA’s independent Accreditation Commission, after which accreditation is granted, tabled, or denied.Any institution that is denied may reapply one year after the Commission’s decision is made.

Fossil Rim Wildlife Center has been an accredited AZA member since 1986.