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  Newsletter 24 September 2021  

Hello Visitor,

Certificant Highlight
MaryEwersJoynerMary Ewers Joyner, CPBT-KA; Avian Program Curator for Raptor Center of Lorain County Metro Parks took a few minutes to talk to us about his certification process.
“I currently serve as the Avian Program Curator at the Raptor Center of Lorain County Metro Parks, located in Ohio. I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from Baldwin-Wallace University and a Masters’ Degree in Environmental Interpretation from the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry. My career to date has spanned nearly 20 years, three states, three nature centers, and two zoos before finally focusing on raptors and working for L.C.M.P. since 2007.

When I started working at the Raptor Center over a decade ago, it looked very different! All “training” was done using force and coercion tactics – the way things had always been done. No one on staff had even heard of IAATE or the IATCB certification possibility that came along in 2011. I didn’t have a strong husbandry or training background and quickly went to work, learning what I could where I could.

When I first heard about IATCB and the opportunity to become a certified bird trainer, I immediately hung the information up at my desk as a “someday goal”. I wanted to provide the highest level of wellness for the animals in my care. I needed the experience to see what was possible and to step outside of the “this is how it’s done” box. I wanted to be able to speak confidently and correctly with other professionals in the field. Heck, I wanted to KNOW more professionals in the field! It was (and still is) a drive to always know more and to do better.

Although this was a dream of mine for years I didn’t have the confidence to even start studying for the exam until two magical things happened – I attended Natural Encounters’ Professional Contemporary Animal Training and Management Workshop and attended Dr. Susan Friedman’s Living and Learning with Animals online course. Having these two experiences in rapid succession opened my eyes to a whole new world of possibilities and had me thinking that maybe, just maybe, I could do it. Not one to leave anything to chance though, I also worked my way through every single book on the IATCB recommended reading list and all the IAATE position statements. I made flashcards for every term on the study guide and took that stack with me everywhere. I even audited a second round of the LLA class to hear the information presented again.

I think the main takeaway here is that if I can do it, you can too! Take it one chunk at a time. The tools are there for you to succeed. My one last piece of advice would be don’t wait to start! Don’t put it up at your desk as a “someday goal”. Every day is an opportunity to work towards the knowledge base you need to improve the lives of the animals in your care. Use it!“

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

Fall Testing is October 24 – November 7, 2020 ... Application deadline September 9, 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. With Prometrics there are no additional International Testing fees!!

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 here to check out a list of approved CEUs! 

Trainers Talk

Are You Messing With Me? Published by Peter Giljam 

To be an effective trainer there are many steps we recommend you follow. To be successful and reach your goals we at Zoospensefull encourage you to plan your sessions. If training by yourself, a clear understanding of the steps or approximations you will be taking to reach your desired goal is a must. If training in a group or with a buddy, talk about the goal of the session, the role of each trainer and the expected outcome or backup plan if anything goes wrong. We see quite often, many unplanned training sessions end up somewhere the trainer didn’t expect. During a workshop about motivation strategies and communication we discussed the importance of not only the above topics but the importance of planning. The planning of sessions and the need to have a ‘toolbox’ full of techniques and strategies for you to correctly respond to behaviour is essential. However, sometimes building your toolbox isn’t all that easy. Read On…

Species Spotlight

Eastern Tiger Salamander; Ambystoma tigrinum

EasternTigerSalamanderThis salamander is the largest land dwelling salamander in North America. It also has the greatest range of any other North American salamander. Fully metamorphosed adults lead a terrestrial existence and, depending upon where in the country they are found, some may inhabit forests, grasslands, or marshy areas. One general requirement seems to be soil in which they are able to burrow or in which the burrow of other species of other animals might be utilized. While they are well suited for terrestrial existence in terms of their skin consistency and thickness, they do need to be able to burrow underground in order to seek the proper humidity levels. The adult tiger salamander is a thick-bodied creature generally with yellow blotches or spots against a black background. Once in a while there will be one with blotches that are tan or olive green in color. Eggs are laid in small pools and hatch within a time period of 19 to 50 days. The larvae remain in the pond until they turn into adults at 2.5 to 5 months of age. Sometimes, adult tiger salamanders remain in the aquatic larval form for their entire lives. The tiger salamander's food source consists of worms, snails, insects, and slugs in the wild. IUCN List them as Least Concern in view of the large extent of occurrence, large number of subpopulations and locations, and large population size, and because the species probably is not declining fast enough to qualify for any of the threatened categories.

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.