This month’s featured CPBT-KA (Certified Professional Bird Trainer - Knowledge Assessed) is Katie Bilzi who currently works as a Senior Trainer at Natural Encounters, Inc. Her favorite bird species to work with are Ravens, "these guys have really helped me to sharpen my training skill in a lot of ways. Always a welcome challenge!"
Katie says she was inspired to take the test since "practicing training skills on my own was one thing, but teaching others how to do it was really intimidating. I knew the test would improve my ability to impart the knowledge of training to others, and that was really important to me."
Being certified has helped Katie in her career because "it really got the ball rolling in my interest for sharing the information with others that want to learn and certainly gave me the confidence to do so."
Her advice for people thinking about getting certified? "Study the materials of course, but also take advantage of anything and everything that you are especially interested in and delve into it further. You never know where it will lead you one day."
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!
Certification Examination for Professional Bird Trainers
Are you signed up for the Fall Testing Cycle?! Application deadline for the Fall testing cycle is September 15! The testing cycle will run October 21 to November 4, 2017. Candidates must meet the following eligibility criteria as of the application deadline indicated on the cover of the handbook:
Three (3) years of professional experience with birds, or membership at the professional level in the International Association of Avian Trainers and Educators.
Completion and filing of an Application for the Certification Examination for Professional Bird Trainers.
Payment of required fees.
It may be possible to establish a special international test center for one or more candidates to take a paper and pencil examination outside of the United States.
The CPBT-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 http://www.iatcb.com/staying-certified/ceu-events to check out a list of approved CEUs!
Looking for CEUs? Zoo Atlanta is hosting a Working Birds Workshop.
This year’s workshop will be held Nov 6th -8th, 2017. The working bird husbandry workshop is geared new keepers and trainers or managers looking to fine tune their skills. Due to the intense hands-on nature of this workshop we have to limit registration to 12 participants. Spots will be filled on a first come, first serve basis. A spot will be held for up to 7 days for Registration forms submitted without payment. Please contact me with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org
Topics included this year will be:
Diet management and writing
Raptor restraint techniques
Flying on creance
Common health issues
Choosing the right bird for your collection
Training voluntary husbandry behaviors
First steps to free flight
Evening Workshops will include:
Bird Training Q & A
Raptor coping (beak shaping) with cadavers
Bird is the Word
Asian White- backed Vulture
These Old-World Vultures are native to South and Southeast Asia and listed as Critically Endangered since 2000. They are very common on the Indian subcontinent. They are often found in cities, towns and villages, near human habitation. They occur in temperate areas, mostly in plains and occasionally in hilly regions. Adults are darker than juveniles, with blackish plumage, a white neck-ruff, and a white patch of feathers on the lower back and upper tail, from which their common name is derived. These vultures are important i
n helping prevent the spread of diseases by ridding areas of carcasses. Declines in vulture numbers in India and Pakistan are resulting in an increase of carcasses remaining to feral dog populations, leading to an increase in the number of feral dogs, which transmit rabies to human populations.
In the 1980's these birds were considered "the most abundant large bird of prey in the world" at numbers estimated to be several million globally. However due to kidney failure from poisoning, in 2016 their numbers were estimated only around 10,000 mature individuals. Efforts are being made to treat cattle with different drugs to stop the poisoning from occurring.