Spotted emerald glass frog © Brandon Alms

March 9 – 13 2015
, Detroit Zoo’s National Amphibian Conservation Center, Royal Oak, Michigan

Course Registration

Please note, payment is now due at the time of registration. Please do not submit a registration form without payment, as it will not be processed.

To pay by check or purchase order:
Download the AMS COURSE REGISTRATION FORM and return by mail with check or purchase order

To pay by credit card:
You can now register and pay online with a credit card! Just log in to our new website. Non-members can log in too after creating an account. After logging in, choose “Upcoming Events” from the menu on the left. Next, click on the title of the event for which you would like to register. Finally, choose “Event Registration” from the options at the top and complete the registration process. When registering online, there is no need to submit the registration form.

Early bird registration deadline: 12 weeks prior to course start date
Final Registration deadline: 4 weeks prior to course start date

Checks sent for course payment will be cashed immediately upon receipt as per standard business practices. Cashing your check does not indicate that you have been accepted into a course. You will receive an acceptance email or wait list email once acceptance decisions are made.

If you have any questions about your acceptance status, or for additional details please contact the AZA Professional Development Program Manager or call (301) 562-0777 ext. 251

Course Description

AZA’s amphibian training course has gone through a metamorphosis all its own! The newly revamped Amphibian Management School focuses on basic husbandry, exhibit design, support for regional conservation programs, and effective conservation messaging in a zoo or aquarium setting. Drawing on expertise from the Amphibian Taxon Advisory Group, this course 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 or aquarium collection.

Tuition & Expenses

Early Bird Rates:
$850 for AZA Individual Members
 $950 for Non-members

Regular Rates:
$950 for AZA Individual Members
, $1050 for Non-members

. The AZA 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.

Target Audience

This course is designed for novice to moderate amphibian zoo keepers, 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. 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.

Travel & Accommodations

Detroit Metro Airport (DTW) is the closest airport.

Course participants stay at a nearby hotel and are transported to the Detroit Zoo in vans for class each day.

Please wait until you are admitted into the course before making your reservations. You will reserve an email containing detailed information regarding your accommodations and transportation once you are admitted.

Course Topics & Instructors

  • History of amphibians in zoos
  • Taxonomy and diversity
  • Value of amphibians/global extinction crisis
  • Husbandry
  • Welfare/enrichment basics for amphibians
  • Captive breeding/management
  • Water quality
  • Live food culture
  • Practical skills for exhibit construction
  • Medical health
  • Shipping
  • ATAG management plans and programs; amphibian resources and networks
  • Mud puppy monitoring
  • Involving your institution in amphibian conservation
  • Interpretive messages/interacting with the public

Rob Hill, Lead Keeper – Zoo Atlanta
Becky Johnson, Associate Curator of Amphibians – Detroit Zoo
Joe Mendelson III, Ph.D., Curator of Herpetology – Zoo Atlanta
Jennifer Pramuk, Ph.D., Animal Curator – Woodland Park Zoo
Vicky Poole, Assistant Curator of Ectotherms – Fort Worth Zoo
Kevin Pratt, Amphibian Research and Enrichment Technician – Detroit Zoo
Wynonna Shellabarger, Veterinarian – Detroit Zoo
Marcy Sieggreen, Curator of Amphibians – Detroit Zoo
Mark Vassallo, Amphibian Keeper – Detroit Zoo


For additional details please contact the AZA Professional Development Department or call (301) 562-0777 ext. 251

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