The certification comes after the museum underwent a thorough review by the AZA’s independent accreditation commission to ensure it has and will continue to meet standards in animal care and welfare, veterinary programs, conservation, education, and safety. The accreditation process must be completed every five years for members to remain in good standing. The museum has been an accredited AZA member since 2002.
“Less than 10 percent of animal facilities registered with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) have achieved AZA accreditation, so the Museum of Science is truly a leader in the profession,” says AZA president and CEO, Dan Ashe. “AZA accreditation signifies the Museum of Science’s active role in protecting our world’s wild animals and wild places while providing exemplary animal care and meaningful guest experiences.”
The accreditation process comprises of a detailed application and an on-site inspection by a team of trained zoo and aquarium professionals. The inspection team observes all aspects of the institution’s operation, including animal care and welfare, keeper training, visitor safety, staff and animals, educational programs, conservation efforts, veterinary programs, financial stability, risk management, and visitor services. Museum executives are then interviewed at a formal hearing by AZA’s independent accreditation commission.
“The Museum of Science is proud to have worked hard to meet the high standards of AZA accreditation and to continue to evaluate our processes,” says Jackie Peeler, Museum of Science, Boston living collections manager. “We are continually looking for ways to improve our care for our animal collection, our education programming, and conservation of our resources. We are honored to have successfully met the AZA standards.”