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Animal-visitor interactions in semi-contrived tourism settings: A study of ‘meet & greets’ in UK zoos

Doodson, Polly; Melfi, Vicky; Webber, Amanda D.; Dumbell, Lucy

Animal-visitor interactions in semi-contrived tourism settings: A study of ‘meet & greets’ in UK zoos Thumbnail


Authors

Polly Doodson

Vicky Melfi

Amanda D. Webber

Lucy Dumbell



Abstract

Animal-visitor interactions are common in captive-wildlife tourism settings, but there is a lack of research exploring what is on offer. This study defines and examines ‘Meet & Greet’ animal experiences in UK zoos within the context of the wider wildlife tourism industry, considering the differences between semi-contrived and fully-contrived interactions. From quantitatively analysing the websites of members of the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the results show that Meet & Greets are frequently offered by zoos in the UK, but that these zoos do not always explicitly describe what the interaction involves. We propose that there is a need for more research on the impact of Meet & Greets, particularly looking at how zoos advertise these experiences and how they are perceived by potential participants, as there is a danger that accredited zoos could inadvertently be promoting the exploitation of animals for photo prop opportunities in other tourist settings.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 10, 2022
Online Publication Date Nov 3, 2022
Deposit Date Nov 21, 2022
Publicly Available Date May 4, 2024
Journal Tourism Recreation Research
Print ISSN 0250-8281
Electronic ISSN 2320-0308
Publisher Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
DOI https://doi.org/10.1080/02508281.2022.2137651
Keywords Zoos; captive-wildlife tourism; animal-visitor interactions; animal photo props; Meet & Greets
Public URL https://uwe-repository.worktribe.com/output/10118041
Publisher URL https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/02508281.2022.2137651?journalCode=rtrr20
Additional Information Peer Review Statement: The publishing and review policy for this title is described in its Aims & Scope.; Aim & Scope: http://www.tandfonline.com/action/journalInformation?show=aimsScope&journalCode=rtrr20; Received: 2022-07-08; Accepted: 2022-10-10; Published: 2022-11-03

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Animal-visitor interactions in semi-contrived tourism settings: A study of ‘meet & greets’ in UK zoos (343 Kb)
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Licence
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/

Publisher Licence URL
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/

Copyright Statement
This is the author’s accepted manuscript of an original article published by Taylor & Francis in ‘Tourism Recreation Research’ online on the 3rd of November 2022. The published version is available at: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/02508281.2022.2137651
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/02508281.2022.2137651


Animal-visitor interactions in semi-contrived tourism settings: A study of ‘meet & greets’ in UK zoos (136 Kb)
Document

Licence
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/

Publisher Licence URL
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/

Copyright Statement
This is the author’s accepted manuscript of an original article published by Taylor & Francis in ‘Tourism Recreation Research’ online on the 3rd of November 2022. The published version is available at: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/02508281.2022.2137651

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/02508281.2022.2137651






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