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  Newsletter 21 October 2021  

Hello Visitor,

Certificant Highlight

Robin Ryan, CPBT-KA ; Supervisor of Animal Ambassadors Experiences at the Dallas Zoo

Robin RyanMy choice to get certified came partly from a guiding push from my director, the want for professional development, personal growth, and leading my team by example. I hope to continue the progress and have the rest of the team work towards certification as well. 

Prepping for the certification has helped my thought process and understanding of learning. I have about 13 years of training experience but a lot of it comes from 'the cultural fog,' as some might say. Really diving into the terms and examples has helped how we discuss training as a team. I feel more confident in my training knowledge and am able to recognize training techniques I was already utilizing. It has also helped my thought processes when tackling a new training situation or looking at a 'problem' behavior. 

We would love to highlight you or your facility in our newsletter and on our Facebook page. Let us know the amazing things that you are doing to help raise the bar! Contact for more information.


Want to find out more about setting these types of standards within your facility or becoming certified? Contact the IATCB board by visiting our website!

Are you a Hopeful Certificant?

Looking for the study guide for the CPAT- KA exam? Click here

Looking for the study guide for the CPBT- KA exam? Click here

Testing Cycles for 2020

The registration for the 2020 testing cycles should be open during December.

Spring testing is April 18 to May 22, 2020
Fall testing is October 24 to November 7, 2020

Go to PTCNY to learn more about who’s eligible to take the exams, download the handbook and start studying!!!

Our testing company, PTC has partnered with Prometric for Computer-Based Testing. Learn More here.

Already certified?

The CPBT-KA and CPAT-KA credential is valid for 5 years from the date it is awarded. To renew the credential a certificant must either re-take the examination after 5 years or accumulate sixty Continuing Education Credits (CEUs) by attending IATCB approved workshops, seminars, classes, or conferences. Head over to to check out a list of approved CEUs!

Trainers Talk

How to Overcome Test Anxiety By Kerry Alvarez

The days that lead up to taking a high-stakes exam are usually the most nerve-wracking and many people experience test anxiety. Test anxiety is the prominent and hyperactive fear of failure and pressure to perform. Test anxiety leaves a severe impact of stress on the human body. The mental effects of test anxiety are helplessness, irrational thought patterns, inability to concentrate, and anger….Read On

Species Spotlight

Merlin; Falco columbarius

merlinMerlins are found throughout the Northern Hemisphere. There are nine recognized subspecies worldwide, with three in North America. Merlins favor open country, preferring grasslands, seashores, sand dunes, marshlands, steppes, and deserts. Merlins rarely live in forested areas throughout much of their range, but frequently breed in coniferous forests. Male merlins have slaty blue, purplish, or dark umber-brown upper parts, streaked with black from the crown to shoulders and back. The tail is barred by dark umber-brown or blackish bands and is tipped in white. The beak is bluish horn; the cere and feet are chromo yellow; the claws are black; and the iris is deep brown. Females and young are similiar to males in their markings, but differ from males in coloration. During the nesting period, Falco columbarius become highly aggressive towards other raptors and crows in the area. This aggressive behavior towards other predatory birds is beneficial to other woodland song and ground birds in the nesting range; since Falco columbarius hunts only in open country, thereby leaving the woodland birds relatively free from predators during the mating season. Merlins prey mainly on small birds of the ground and low vegetation. Some small mammals, lizards, snakes, insects, and - in North America - dragonflies, also make up a portion of the diet. The relative proportions are about 80% birds, 5% mammals, and 15% insects. Merlins occasionally prey on agricultural insect pests, such as grasshoppers and crickets. Merlins are listed at Least Concern on the IUCN red list (2016); this species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion


The International Avian Trainers Certification Board and the International Animal Trainers Certification Board, IATCB, offers you a way to gain professional credibility, increase your earnings potential, and advance your career. We live in a competitive world, and animal trainers are no different than anyone else looking for advanced knowledge and skill in their profession. IATCB endorses voluntary certification by examination for all professionals involved with animals, including trainers, educators, handlers, veterinarians, and all others involved in the care and handling of animals.