Get involved in our annual, two day event for zookeepers.

This could be your chance to share your experience by giving a presentation, and set yourself ahead of the competition by adding it to your cv.

Never given a presentation before?  Feeling too nervous?  ABWAK welcomes first timers and offers presentation time slots from just 10 mins.  So come on, challenge yourself!

ABWAK offer the opportunity for zookeepers to share their knowledge through our events, RATEL and our website.  The annual Symposium provides a wide range of topics on a variety of species, and a selection of practical workshops.  There's always something to suit everyone, from animal students to animal managers.

Our Symposium is held on the first weekend in March every year (barring extreme circumstances like the Beast from the East in 2018!).  We aim to choose venues all over the UK and Ireland and keep the prices low to make the event more accessible.

The success and popularity of the Symposium has  grown massively in the last 5 years and we now regularly sell out with around 180 capacity.  Often all the tickets are sold by the end of the member's only early bird rate - so there's another reason to join up.

Bookings and a "Call for Papers" normally go out in the September preceding the following year's Symposium.  Keep an eye on our website or social media for updates, or if you are a member you can subscribe to our regular e-newsletter for the latest on all ABWAK activities.

If you work at an animal collection that has a meeting capacity of around 200 and would like to host our Symposium, please contact us on

ABWAK endeavour to keep our training events affordable for all, and we also have travel grants available to our members to help fund expenses to attend.  Log in to our members' area to access the application forms.

ABWAK Council is run by volunteer zoo professionals, who receive no monetary benefits for the time and energy they devote to the running of the organisation.



ABWAK are extremely grateful for the generosity of the following business and charities that have sponsored the 2024 symposium. 

With their sponsorship it has allowed ABWAK to hold the symposium at London Zoo where ABWAK was founded 50th years ago however has also allowed us to keep cost low for delegates to attend. 

Please click the logos below to find out more information about our sponsors. 



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