Feline Conservation Federation Offers Wild Feline Husbandry Course in Strafford, Missouri

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Husbandry Course instructor Lynn Culver says, "The Wild Feline Husbandry course provides basic education invaluable to current and aspiring wild feline owners, employees and volunteers at zoos and sanctuaries, and animal control and wildlife agencies."

Feline Conservation Federation (FCF) continues its work to educate owners and enthusiasts of exotic wild felines by offering another Wild Feline Husbandry Course. The next FCF course is Saturday, October 29, from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm at the Wild Animal Safari, a 250-acre drive-thru park located in Strafford, Missouri, outside of Springfield.

The following day, students will return to the Safari at 10 am for a special guided tour of the Park’s felines, including, lion, tiger, leopard, puma, serval and others. Experienced keepers will give the students an inside education on feline husbandry at the park. Afterwards, students will enjoy the drive thru Safari featuring a variety of hoof stock, birds, and mammals.

Certified course instructor Lynn Culver says, "Teaching the husbandry course at a successful public exhibit like Wild Animal Safari, gives students the opportunity to observe proper husbandry practices first-hand, and ask questions of the keepers."

The 8-course multi-media presentation will be conducted at the Safari Classroom. The course teaches natural feline history, regulatory agencies and permits, facility design, handling equipment, diet, health care, behavior and handling, and contingency planning. Students receive a textbook, and are tested. Passing students receive a decorative certificate of completion. Lunch will be served at the Safari Grill.

"I feel one of the most crucial areas covered was enclosure designs, in light of so many states and counties enacting new regulations on the keeping of wild cats," says Teresa Shaffer, former student, and USDA licensed breeder and outreach educator.

Last year Missouri legislature passed new regulations for large felids. Many of the laws enacted in the past few years have been a reaction to accidents. By helping people be better-prepared and more knowledgeable, FCF hopes it will increase safety for both handlers and the public. “Hopefully that will have a positive effect, and help put a stop to these emotion-charged and punitive animal bills being introduced,” says course instructor Culver.

The Feline Conservation Federation is a non-profit education and conservation association. FCF has 900 members consisting of feline conservationists, breeders, exhibitors, educators, sanctuaries, zoos and feline enthusiasts. FCF supports feline conservation efforts globally and its members specialize in hands-on husbandry of wild felines for ambassador work and conservation breeding.

Registration for the two-day Husbandry Course is $145 ($110 for FCF members) and includes entry to the Safari both days, and lunch on Saturday. Registration can be made online at the Feline Conservation Federation website. For more information contact Lynn Culver.

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