Orientation to the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians’ (AAZV) Website, Web Directory, and Listserv (AAZV-L)
Thomas G. Curro, DVM, MS
As electronic communication becomes the norm around the world the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians (AAZV) continues to strive to provide this service to its membership. The AAZV provides three outlets for this mode of communication: the AAZV website, the web directory, and the AAZV listserv (AAZV-L).
The AAZV website provides a large database of information relative to the workings of the organization, and provides information related to animal heath, disease, and conservation. At this time, the website averages 400 visits per day, generating about 2,800 accesses to the website’s documents. The home page for the website is located at www.aazv.org. The home page has four major areas including a menu, listing categories that will allow visitors to navigate to the 370+ documents on the site, links to organizational news, links to medical and conservation news, and a search engine which allows a keyword search for documents within the AAZV website. Let’s look at these individually.
By entering keywords into this box, the entire AAZV website is searched, and any documents found containing the keywords are listed. In this way, it is relatively easy to find the information you may be seeking if you are not sure where to start looking on the site. At this time, only html (“website code”) documents can be searched, so a special link www.aazv.org/aazv_doc_biblio.htm (VIN editor: link was not accessible as of 1/25/2021.) will take members to a document containing an alphabetic list of PDF, Excel, and Word documents which might not show up in a keyword search.
This section provides links to current information of concern to our organization’s members. Annual Conference information, special meeting information, and important organization documents may be found here. At the bottom of this window is a link to the previous information that has been posted in this section.
Medical and Conservation News
This section provides links to current information of concern regarding emerging diseases, current diseases, important conservation documents, etc. At the bottom of this window is a link to the previous information that has been posted in this section.
AAZV organization. This page contains information regarding officers, past presidents, bylaws, AAZV mission/objectives and benefits, membership, financial support/grants, strategic plan, and other miscellaneous documents useful to the organization’s members.
Committees. This page contains information regarding all the AAZV Committees. Each Committee has their own page listing chairs, members, annual reports, and variable information provided by the Committee.
Job openings. This page is the most visited page on the AAZV website. It contains job openings for zoo and wildlife veterinarians, residents, interns, veterinary technicians, postgraduate, and other academic and research positions. All positions are dated at posting and usually contain an application deadline. To keep the page as current as possible, postings are deleted one month after the application deadline, which gives extra time in the event the position is not filled by the deadline.
Education center. This is another very active webpage on the AAZV website. This area is useful for veterinarians, as well as veterinary students. There are links to upcoming meetings and workshops, ACZM exam information, externship opportunities by state, internship and residency opportunities by institution, manuscript and poster competition and awards information, and the student zoo and wildlife clubs.
Student links. This page is primarily for veterinary medical students and contains links to externship opportunities by state, student zoo and wildlife clubs, and student manuscript competition.
Grants/Awards. This page contains links to information regarding financial support for attending the AAZV conference, student and postgraduate award competitions, poster award competition, and other grants and awards being offered in the field of zoo and wildlife health, nutrition, and conservation. The annual recipients of the awards, and their work, are listed on the Awards Committee page.
Meetings/Workshops. This is the place to go to get information on upcoming AAZV and allied health organization meetings, workshops, other continuing education offerings.
JZWM. This page is the home for information regarding the Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine. Links to manuscript submission guidelines and fees are found here. This is also the page to find links to the JZWM abstracts in Arabic, Czech, German, English, French, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish. The organization is very grateful to have a team of dedicated translators that make this possible.
Current/Emerging disease. This page contains links to numerous disease information protocols and guidelines. This is the page to visit when issues like monkeypox, West Nile virus, and avian influenza arise. There are also links to the CBSG Disease Risk Handbook and the Investigation of Infectious Disease Outbreaks in Captive Wildlife Facilities PowerPoint presentations.
SSP/TAG/VAG info. This page will be your stop for information related to SSPs, TAGs, and Vet Advisors. Information found here includes links to SSP/TAG/VAG species reports, protocols, guidelines, and info (you will select from a list of species), links to American Zoo and Aquarium Association (AZA) documents explaining SSPs and TAGs, link to the AZA Contraception Advisory Group documents, and a link to necropsy and pathology protocols (a secure area to be discussed below). This page also has a link for AZA members who are not AAZV members so they may have access to the secure information.
Contraception center. This is a link to the AZA Wildlife Contraception Center at the St. Loius Zoo (http://www.stlzoo.org/animals/scienceresearch/contraceptioncenter). (VIN editor: link was not accessible as of 1/25/2021.)
International Zoo Vet Forum (IZVF). This is a link to the ISIS sponsored forums, which includes the IZVF. The forum can be reached by clicking on this link or through the ISIS website: http://forums.isis.org/forums/cgibin/Ultimate.cgi?action=intro&category=1&BypassCookie=true. (VIN editor: link was not accessible as of 1/25/2021.) This very active forum is the place to communicate with colleagues concerning medical and conservation issues. Messages are archived, so you may search them to find out if your questions have been addressed in the past. This forum is open to all veterinarians working full-time in zoo and wildlife positions. For more info, contact the moderator, Dalen Agnew (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Links. This is a page providing links to many veterinary and allied health organizations around the globe, disease organizations, governmental organizations and regulations, medical/surgical information sites, commercial sites having relevance to AAZV members, and literature/search engines.
Zoo News Digest. Every week or so, a gentleman by the name of Peter Dickinson pulls together the latest news, good and bad, from zoos around the world, and sends the information out on a listserv known as Zoo News Digest. He has kindly agreed to allow those zoo news links to be incorporated into a listing accessible from the main AAZV page. Updates will occur when provided by Mr. Dickinson. Interestingly, this is in the top ten most visited pages on the AAZV website.
Sitemap. Can’t find where to start on the home page? The sitemap provides a bit more detail to the links available on the AAZV website. If this isn’t enough, then use the Search Box function explained above.
Members only. This link is available only to AAZV members, and is username and password protected. Here you will find AAZV organization, current/emerging disease, membership directories, documents, and AZA animal health committee documents deemed to have information that should not be accessible to the general public. If you are an AAZV member, and do not have access to this area, contact Tom Curro (email@example.com).
AAZV web directory. This is a link to the AAZV web directory described below.
AAZV Web Directory
The web directory is a searchable database of AAZV members and their various employment and personal information. All AAZV members are encouraged to register for this directory. At the present time, 286 AAZV members have registered. You need to be an AAZV member, and you need the AAZV members-only username and password to get started. A link to the instructions for registration may be found on the AAZV home page below the medical/conservation news box. During the registration process, you will designate your own username and password. This will allow you to securely make editions to your web directory information, keeping the directory as current as possible. If you have questions regarding the AAZV web directory, contact Tom Curro (firstname.lastname@example.org), Lisa Done (ExoticVet@aol.com), or Dalen Agnew (email@example.com).
AAZV Listserv (AAZV-L)
The AAZV-L, sponsored by Googlegroups, allows for dissemination of timely and/or urgent organizational information to all of its members, directly to their email in-boxes. This listserv is only open to AAZV members, and cannot be viewed by the general public. At this time, other than those that have opted-out, all current AAZV members are registered on the AAZV-L, and should be receiving periodic digests of AAZV-L postings. If you are an AAZV member not currently on the AAZV-L, contact Tom Curro (firstname.lastname@example.org) to be added to the listserv. You do not need to have a Google Groups account to be part of the AAZV-L. But if you do have your own account, you will be able to access archives of past messages, as well as use the links included in the digest emails. The AAZV-L general instructions and guidelines will be emailed to you upon registration.
The combination of these three forms of electronic communication (website, web directory, and AAZV-L) will ensure that AAZV members are kept up-to-date and informed on issues relevant to all.