The ZIMS application was first imagined – a real-time Web-based institutional and pooled animal and veterinary knowledgebase – in the year 2000. Hundreds of zoo and aquarium professionals contributed ideas for the ZIMS software.
The ZIMS application represents a quantum leap forward in information management for more than 800 ISIS member institutions in more than 80 countries. The ZIMS database will be a unified, global repository of knowledge on animal health and well-being – the first such database in the world. ZIMS will provide a resource of pooled, uniform, consistent and comprehensive information to more than 20,000 zoological professional worldwide each day.
Zoological professionals will use the ZIMS application to track pertinent information needed by their animal-care staff, including collection management, husbandry, and health and disease history to further enhance local care and international conservation efforts. ISIS members will enter their data directly into the ZIMS database. Any ISIS member (and others with permission) will be able to search the database and retrieve information they need (with appropriate security protections) for myriad purposes.
The ISIS database currently contains records on 2.6 million animals (374,000 currently living) and more than 10,000 species. As ISIS members begin to expand their use of electronic records through the ZIMS application, this knowledgebase will expand greatly, and will inspire new uses for this information.
"With ZIMS, we will be able to exchange core data of an animal, and also all kinds of information about husbandry, veterinary care, behavior in a way that is very easy and less time-consuming than now. And all the data we find will be current. This will make life so much easier! Instead of writing e-mails and phoning colleagues we can search for this kind of information in ZIMS."
Dr. Ulrike Rademacher
Wilhelma Zoological and Botanical Gardens