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Project information

Mobile Zoo investigations fund

In this project we aim to gather evidence on life for animals in the mobile zoo industry, the way they are cared for and how they are used in mobile zoos. We will use our findings to continue to grow our public outreach, most notably with schools.

Ongoing throughout 2017

Charity information: Freedom for Animals

Freedom for Animals logo
  • Need


    These companies showcase a range of animals, mostly wild at public events. As this industry has grown so have the number of animals they use, with an estimated 3500 animals currently being transported around the country for events. Basic research shows that the living standards of the animals are inconsistent, with many living in a range of situations in the homes of the business owners. With little specific legislation to control this industry, many animals are at risk in this growing industry.


    There is a desperate need to raise awareness about these businesses and what life is like for the animals in them. A key way to do this is to collect compelling evidence to demonstrate what is happening to animals. With this we can create the resources needed and any evidence of animal suffering, neglect or abuse that we find during our research will be forwarded to the relevant authorities to help the animals.
    This is the first step in a longer campaign to protect animals in mobile zoos.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Collect evidence on the life for animals in mobile zoos


    » Carry out investigations into mobile zoos to collect images and footage of the animals and their living conditions, handling and general treatment.
    » Carry out research into the industry by visiting public mobile zoo events, collecting images and footage, talking to staff and members of the public
    » Producing appropriate reports as needed for Government and local councils seeking guidance or data on this issue

    What success will look like

    Success will be having a collection of photos, footage and written reports on at least three mobile zoos to give some insight into the industry to be used as evidence.

    Aim 2

    Produce an up-to-date factsheet and leaflet for teachers and parents


    » Combine our new evidence and case studies to produce an updated factsheet and leaflet for parents and teachers
    » Distribute these resources to at least 500 primary schools across the UK

    What success will look like

    Using our evidence to liaise with schools about the industry, sending information packs to 500 schools and securing pledges against booking these businesses.

    Aim 3

    Increase public awareness of the issues of keeping animals in mobile zoos


    » Use our findings to continue to raise public awareness and encourage people to reconsider booking mobile zoos

    What success will look like

    Increased enquiries from members of the public into the campaign, increased pledges to not book a mobile zoo

  • Impact


    The project is a further step into the development of this crucial campaign against an industry that is not effectively controlled by authorities. As this industry is relatively new, there is much that needs to be investigated and standards to be evaluated, to protect animals. Ultimately we want to see a reduction in the number of businesses in existence, the number of animals used and eventually, an end to the use of animals in this way.


    There is a risk when collecting footage at a location that you may be confronted, asked to stop filming or asked to leave. We limit this possibility by attending events at venues open to the public where the capture of film and photography is allowed or otherwise by using hidden camera equipment.


    As with every project that our kind supporters donate to, we will send out the results of our investigations work via direct letter to each donor outlining the outcomes of the project and how their donation was used. They will also receive the first copies of the factsheet and leaflets produced.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £5,144

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £2,440 Researcher To carry out the investigations and research
      £700 Travel and accomodation To mobile zoo events
      £284 Photography SD cards and lens
      £700 Design and printing Of 5000 leaflets and 100 reports
      £400 Website Update and improve mobile zoo website
      £620 Mailout To schools and councils
  • Background


    The exact locations of the project cannot yet be released due to the sensitive nature of the project. We will select key mobile zoo businesses to attend, using prior research to identify those that have received negative reports or have demonstrated questionable practices.


    The thousands of animals in mobile zoos will be the ones to benefit, as more people and authorities will become aware that these animals can suffer and that the industry is virtually unregulated.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Our charity was the first to carry out extensive research into the mobile zoo industry in the UK as well as one of the main organisations to help expose the first case of neglect at a mobile zoo. As well as extensive knowledge of the industry, we have years of experience in carrying out successful research, investigations and public outreach.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Nicola O'Brien

    Campaigns Director - Will oversee the investigation, research, design and reporting.

    Maddy Taylor

    Campaigns Officer - Will carry out research, manage volunteers, write factsheets and assist in public promotion.


    Carries out the investigations - identity not revealed due to the nature of their work

    Alison Robinson

    Administrator - Thanking and reporting back to donors with our findings

Regular transportation is a known cause of stress for animals and yet those used by mobile petting zoo companies are transported on a regular basis.

Nicola O'Brien, Campaigns Director