ZAA Fact Sheets

What is ZAA

ZAA Accreditation

ZAA Conservation

ZAA Education


With more than sixty accredited members, the Zoological Association of America (ZAA) is the second largest trade association in the zoological sector; counting among its members some of the finest facilities in United States.

As part of its core mission, ZAA accredits professional zoological facilities. ZAA accreditation is predicated on promoting the highest standards of animal welfare, as well as public and staff safety. Our accreditation standards meet or exceed all accepted industry standards and federal requirements. Our safety record is the best of any of the major zoological trade associations.

Programmatically, ZAA’s focus begins with superior animal husbandry. We support the concept that animal care and management is most effective when it is tailored to the specific needs of respective collections. Our leadership team is comprised of experienced zoological professionals having decades of firsthand experience, not simply trade association executives.

Conservation, Education and Research are also major pillars of our work at ZAA. While it is extremely important that our organization supports in-situ conservation programs around the globe, our accredited member institutions are involved in conservation well beyond providing basic funding to our NGO partners. This work includes reintroduction programs, rescue and rehab, and a series of predator/prey conflict avoidance programs and studies. Additionally, through maintenance of robust captive populations of threatened or endangered species, ZAA institutions create a conservation safety net for wild populations. These species management programs are coordinated across our accredited member institutions to ensure the greatest genetic variability.

ZAA’s commitment to the fields of Research and Education takes us beyond animal ambassador programs and classroom education to more comprehensive work with wildlife management professionals around the globe. This work includes conducting and supporting research in behavioral sciences and genetics and exchanging information and training on husbandry, nutrition, best management practices, and veterinary care.