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ATAG’s 2019 Amphibian Management Course
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This hands-on learning experience focuses on the latest in basic husbandry techniques, exhibit design, support for regional conservation programs, and effective conservation messaging in a zoo or aquarium collection.

2/18/2019 to 2/22/2019
When: Monday, February 18, 2019
Where: Detroit Zoo’s National Amphibian Conservation Center
Royal Oak, Michigan 
United States
Contact: Vicky Poole

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HOWDY, ALL! Registration for ATAG’s 2019 Amphibian Management Course is now open using the link below with a Nov 15 Early Bird discount! Don’t forget to apply for the open scholarship by the Nov 15 deadline using the included forms.

Vicky A. Poole

ATAG Secretary &Training Program Coordinator 


Course information for ATAG’s Amphibian Management School

Where: Hosted by the Detroit Zoo’s National Amphibian Conservation Center in Royal Oak, Michigan

When: February 18-22, 2019


Course Description

This hands-on learning experience focuses on the latest in basic husbandry techniques, exhibit design, support for regional conservation programs, and effective conservation messaging in a zoo or aquarium collection. Participants will learn not only about amphibian husbandry, but also how to connect with conservation projects, breeding program management, enrichment basics, amphibian health fundamentals, and more to improve amphibian management at their institutions and impact amphibians globally. Under guidance of the Amphibian Taxon Advisory Group (ATAG), AMS provides knowledge about amphibians and skills for managing these sensitive species in captivity that are essential for anyone working directly with amphibians in a zoo, aquarium, conservation, or research settings. Course includes field trip to look for wild mudpuppies!


Target Audience

This course is ideal for novice to moderate amphibian zoo keepers, veterinarians, academics, and professional biologists who currently work with amphibians in an institutional or lab setting,research or education staff who need more training on handling and husbandry of amphibians, and representatives of nature centers and natural history museums or science centers with limited amphibian experience.



None – this is a beginners course. Priority will be given to AZA members, but volunteers and private herpetologists are welcome to attend. International applicants and those not affiliated with an AZA accredited institution will be considered on a case-by-case basis; please submit a letter describing your intended benefit from taking this course.


Course Registration

IMPORTANT DATES:    Early bird registration deadline: November 15, 2018

Final Registration deadline: January 11, 2019

To register, log onto the following linkand follow instructions for registration submission and payment:


Please note that payment is due at the time of registration, and registration is required for all students even if submitting separately for a scholarship.

Applicants will be accepted on a first-come basis. Applicants can expect to receive an acceptance or waitlisted email confirmation (waitlisted students will not have their payment processed until course acceptance).  

If you have any questions about your acceptance status, or for additional details please contact the Course Administrator, Vicky Poole (


Tuition & Expenses

Early Bird Rates – Application received by November 15, 2018:
$600 for 
AZA Individual Members (AZA registrations for next year can be made after October 1)
$700 for Non-members

Regular Rates – Nov 16, 2018 through final course deadline of January 11, 2019:
$650 for AZA Individual Members
$750 for Non-members

The registration fee above covers tuition and lunches for each day of the course. Other expenses include hotel, travel, and other meals. Scholarship funding is available through a competitive process; information on available scholarships follows:

  • International Scholarship (outside U.S. & Canada): ZCOG’s Cameron Park Zoo Amphibian Conservation Scholarship

In partnership with Zoo Conservation Outreach Group's (ZCOG) Conservation Training Scholarship Program, AZA's Professional Development Committee is pleased to offer a scholarship for our international zoo, aquarium, and conservation community colleagues. Deadline has now passed.

  • U.S. & Canada Scholarship: Marcy Sieggreen Professional Development Scholarship

Covers Registration Fee only; not travel expenses. Deadline is November 15, 2018.

Please download scholarship application forms and submit via email directly to, including “Marcy Sieggreen Professional Development Scholarship” in the email subject line. Separate course registration at the link above is required in addition to the scholarship application; winner will be notified of the final award by December 5, 2018 and any registration fees paid will be refunded to winner.


REFUNDS: The course administrators will refund registration fees in full for any waitlisted applicants who paid but are not admitted. All other refund requests must be received in writing ( no later than 4 weeks prior to the course start date. Refunds will not be issued for cancellations made after this date or for no shows. Substitutions from the same institutions can be accepted without penalty, as long as the request is provided in writing and approved by course administrators.


Travel & Accommodations

Detroit Metro Airport (DTW) is the closest airport. Please also budget and make reservations for airport shuttles; options include:


Course participants stay at The Comfort Suites, a hotel in nearby Southfield (~15 minutes from the zoo, and within walking distance to restaurants); hotel offers free breakfast daily and has an indoor pool, hot tub, gym, and a business suite. Students are transported to the classrooms at the Detroit Zoo in vans for class each day. Room rates are $99/night for double or king. For discounted group room rates, book before January 28, 2019 online via,or call the hotel directly at 248-357-9990 and mention the "Detroit Zoo-Amphibian Management School" group block.


ROOM SHARING: Interested students should contact Ruth Marcec ( if they would like to be put in touch with other students looking to share hotel room as available.


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