Jay Pratte: Back to Nature
Time & Location
About the Event
Join us for a discussion on the importance of incorporating physiology, “natural” behaviors and species traits of bears into your training goals and programs. We all know that one species of bear is most definitely NOT the same as any other species, so how do we incorporate similarities and differences between bear species into our planning and sessions? We will discuss some of the obvious (and less obvious) aspects of bears’ genetic predispositions and living strategies, and how we can use these to our advantage.
THEN, we will chat about how to showcase these “natural”, species-typical behaviors into our programs for visitor demonstrations and talks. Keeping guests engaged and educated can be a challenge. Playing on the inherent natural abilities that each species is known for creates opportunities to illustrate what these animals are capable of and what makes them so amazing, all while demonstrating our skills as trainers and caregivers, and how we work to allow bears to just be, well… bears.
About Jay Pratte:
Jay has been internationally known for animal behavior and welfare expertise for nearly three decades, working with game farms, sanctuaries, and accredited zoos, and species ranging from ant colonies to giant pandas. A founding board member and President of the Bear Care Group, he has a Masters degree in Zoo and Aquarium Management, has authored numerous publications, and is co-editor for AAZK’s “Training Tales” in the Animal Keeper’s Forum. Jay is adjunct professor at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, teaching Animal Behavior classes/labs, and his own course “Animal Welfare and Human Influence”.
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