Avian Management, Biology and Conservation

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Just for the birders!

February 8-13, 2016
Oglebay Resort
Wheeling, WV  

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 AMBC 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.

Course Description

Avian Management, Biology and Conservation will enhance your effectiveness as a bird keeper and avian program leader.  A major goal of the class is to teach critical thinking techniques that lead to informed decisions regarding the future of avian collections. Students will be given a variety of tools, techniques and best practices to provide a foundation for understanding and meeting current challenges in avian management.

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 

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

 The AZA registration fee above covers only tuition for the course. Other expenses include hotel, travel, and meals. For more information about costs and logistics for courses hosted by Oglebay Resort in Wheeling, WV, visit our Wheeling Courses Travel Information page.

Scholarship funding is available through a competitive process.


Target Audience

This course is targeted toward bird keepers, keepers who need to gain experience with bird husbandry, and professional managers of zoos, aquariums, nature centers, aviaries, wildlife agencies and related organizations who are interested in management of an avian collection or program. Facilities with a single broad taxonomic animal manager will benefit from the techniques and processes provided in the course.


None.  Priority will be given to individuals associated with AZA accredited institutions, but volunteers and private aviculturalists 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

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.

Travel & Accommodations

Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT) is the closest airport. Airport Limousine Plus and First Class Limo provide a shuttle service between PIT and the hotel.

Course participants stay at Oglebay Resort & Conference Center in Wheeling, West Virginia and classes meet on-site.

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

Course Topics & Instructors

  • History of Avian Collections
  • Collection Planning
  • Acquisition/Disposition
  • Facilities
  • Staff
  • Reproductive Management
  • Behavioral Management
  • Avian Health and Nutrition
  • Conservation
  • Interpretation
  • Research

Joe Barkowski, Vice President of Animal Conservation & Science - Tulsa Zoo
Hannah Bailey, Curator of Birds - Houston Zoo
Bruce Bohmke, Chief Operations Officer - Woodland Park Zoo
Patty McGill, Vice President, Conservation & Education - Dallas Zoo
Scott Newland, Curator of Birds - Sedgwick County Zoo

Course Schedule

4:30-6:30 PM - Student registration
5:00-6:30 PM - Dinner buffet open
6:40-7:30 PM - Opening ceremony
7:30-9:00 PM - Courses meet for individual opening session/class

Tuesday through Saturday
Classes meet all day

9:00-4:00 - Classes meet
4:00-5:00 PM - Social and Silent Auction
5:00-5:30 PM - Closing Ceremony


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