The Zoo’s Director of Nutrition, Dr. Jason Williams, was the co-author of an article titled “Current Practices in Aquatic Animal Supplementation” that was recently published in the scholarly publication “Journal of Zoo and Aquarium Research.” Dr. Williams holds a Ph.D. in animal nutrition from Texas A&M University and has been the Zoo’s Director of Nutrition since 2006.
The study, which took approximately 2 years to complete, focused on diet supplementations for aquatic animals that need additional nutrition than that given in just their food. Information was gathered from 70 facilities and showed a wide variation in how nutritional supplements are used for marine mammals. Dr. Williams’ research was significant for helping animal care professionals provide their animals with the nutrients they need while also avoiding over-supplementation, which can be harmful.
While past studies have led to advances in how feeder fish are caught, processed, stored and fed to marine animals, there have been limited updates to how supplements are provided in the diet. New recommendations have been made as a result of Dr. Williams’ study.
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