On the 3rd March, Cassandra Murray, Evaluation Coordinator from the Zoological Society of London came to visit the Reaseheath Animal Management Department to work with our second year FdSc Zoo Management students. Cassandra worked with students throughout the day focusing on the importance of visitor surveys and how they can influence decision making within zoos. The students took part in lectures and workshops and created their own visitor survey. They carried out the survey on campus looking into what our current staff and students think of our zoo and how they would like to see it develop. The students are hopefully going to be carrying on with their visitor surveys during the Easter and summer holidays, to find out what the general public think of the Reaseheath Zoo.
This research can then potentially be used to influence future decision making regarding the Reaseheath Zoo.
Visitor surveys are becoming common practice in zoos and help influence decision making in a variety of ways; from enclosure design to signage and the utilisation of funding to name just a few examples. Visitor surveys can provide us with a sound basis for monitoring performance and are useful for future marketing planning and development. This is a new proficiency that our degree students are enthusiastically running with, which is great news for the Reaseheath Zoo!
Lecturer in Animal Management