West Orange Turtle Back Zoo Gets Accredited

WEST ORANGE, NJ — The Turtle Back Zoo received accreditation from the Zoological Association of America (ZAA) early this month. The accreditation is valid through 2022.

This is the first time the zoo is accredited by the ZAA. It was previously accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums back in 2006.

“We have transformed Turtle Back Zoo into a resource for recreation, education and conservation. Being an accredited facility ensures the public that our animals are well-cared for, our exhibits meet the highest standards and our overall facility is well-managed,” Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo Jr. announced in a press release. “To be accredited by two independent agencies is a great achievement and I commend our zoo staff, volunteer docents and Zoological Society for working tirelessly so that Turtle Back Zoo meets the highest standards.”

The new accreditation is a multi-phase process and presents an extremely high bar with respect to professional standards and best management practices. The accreditation process usually takes up to one year to complete and reaccreditation is required every five years.

For the accreditation, the Turtle Back Zoo had to go through an in-depth application and review process, which included on-site inspections by a team of experts from around the country. Several elements were considered and inspected during the process, among them: Animal care and nutrition, safety and security, facility aesthetics and maintenance, and policies and procedures review.

The zoo is open every day from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. For more information, visit http://turtlebackzoo.com/

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