Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The National Wildlife Control Training Program

For those of you not familiar with this project, let me provide a little background. Regrettably, most states lack even rudimentary training requirements for the licensing of wildlife control operators (WCO). Part of the reason for this situation is the dearth of training materials and the fact that state wildlife agencies, already underfunded and overworked, don't have the resources to create a program let alone administer it. Our program seeks to correct that. We have created a training program designed to provide beginning WCOs the fundamentals of the trade.

We will provide this training in multiple ways, including print (book forthcoming in January, 2011), online (January 2011) and in person if states desire that. This training will also be open to businesses wishing to train new workers.

The training consists of two main parts. First is the core modules. Core modules are what we believe every WCO should know regardless of where they live. It's written in a manner that makes it suitable for WCOs regardless of their respective state laws.

Part 2 consists of species modules. Each species module will address the biology, damage, and control methods related to that particular species. We anticipate that states or individuals can select which species they want to learn about. This allows individuals to learn about species that they are allowed to control.

The exam at the end will cover the modules that were selected.

In addition, states that wish to work with us, can edit the species modules so that only those techniques permitted in their state are discussed. Biology and range information can also be adjusted to reflect the specific facts in that respective state. These state specific training materials can then be printed and/or provided on-line. States won't have to bear the costs of hosting or modification of materials as the user can bear the full price. What is that price? We don't know at the moment because we are still preparing the document for publication. But we anticipate the on-line training (which will have additional training resources than what can be provided by the book) to be less than 200 dollars which will include the cost of the exam. Of course, advanced training modules will be provided in the future. If you are interested in providing advanced training, please contact me. We want to work with you.

Here is an outline of the National Wildlife Control Training Program

Part 1 WCO Core Training Modules

1. Principles of Wildlife Damage Management – Introduction to principles, definition of concepts, best practices concepts,.

2. Physical Safety - The section on physical safety (like ladder safety) and expand on details related to working in the field dealing with animal capture and certain control techniques.

3. Wildlife Diseases – We discuss personal safety, personal protection equipment, common diseases, and the meaning and problems of zoonotic diseases.

4. Site Inspection – The process and theory of on-site investigation of wildlife damage complaints.

5. Overview of wildlife control methods - The overview of control methods prepares technicians for the control techniques they fill find in the species specific information.

6. Animal Handling—Treatment and capture of free-ranging and trapped animals. .

7. Euthanasia & Carcass Disposal—Killing methods and options for the disposition of carcasses.

8. Business Practices – Overview of standard business practices. This is NOT a how to run you business.

9. Legal and Ethical Issues – The importance of following federal, state and local laws. Demonstration of values, business and personal ethics, the ethical treatment of wildlife (animals in general) in the media.

PART 2 Species Modules


We are excited about this new development. Stay tuned or even better, stop by and see us at NWCOA's convention in New Orleans Jan 13 and following.

Stephen Vantassel, Project Coordinator, CWCP, ACP
Internet Center for Wildlife Damage Management
School of Natural Resources
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
414 Hardin Hall
Lincoln, NE 68583-0974 U.S.A.
phone: 402-472-8961
fax: 402-472-2946
email: svantassel2@unl.edu
web site: http://icwdm.org

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