Conservation and Animal Welfare Science ('CAWS'): We've got the anagram - now let's create the field
Wall Scholars Cafe
13 May 2009
Talk by David Fraser, Land & Food Systems and Centre for Applied Ethics
The concerns that people express about animals tend to focus on two issues: animal conservation (preservation of populations, species, and ecosystems) and animal welfare (suffering, health, and quality of life). Scientists responding to these concerns have created two distinct fields. Conservation biology uses the tools of ecology and population biology, and deals with wild animals at the population and ecosystem level. Animal welfare science uses the tools of animal behaviour, physiology and veterinary medicine, and deals mainly with domestic and captive animals, especially at the individual level. Actions taken in support of animal conservation (such as controlling abundant animals to protect endangered ones) sometimes trigger opposition on grounds of animal welfare, and vice versa. However, some of the major harms to animals arise from forestry, agriculture, manufacturing, transportation and urban development, and these constitute threats to both animal conservation and animal welfare. And as the human population of the planet increases, the problems of conservation and animal welfare will increasingly merge. A Wall Exploratory Workshop recently brought together experts in both fields to articulate a shared understanding of problems and research approaches.
Lunch and talk 12 to 1:30 pm, but welcome 11:45 to 2:00 pm.