Courses Offered at SWRS

 

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Specialized Courses offered by the SWRS

 

SWRS offers several advanced training courses and also workshops for “advanced” amateurs.  See the course descriptions below, and please contact the websites provided for further information.

 

Species Distribution Modeling Methods for Conservation Biologists

Models that predict species’ potential distributions by combining observed occurrence records with digital data layers of environmental variables have great potential for application across a range of ecological analyses. The course will focus on the theoretical and practical aspects of this approach (sometimes termed ‘ecological niche’ or ‘bioclimate envelope’ modeling) and is designed for students, researchers and practitioners of conservation biology. Using a mixture of lectures, hands-on computer lab applications, discussions, and case studies, course participants will learn to:  Obtain and process data necessary for species distribution modeling; Run distribution models using a variety of approaches;  Validate and interpret model results;  Apply these techniques to a range of applications, including conservation prioritization, predicting potential impacts of climate change, and forecasting species’ invasions.

Each participant is encouraged to develop an idea for a project they would like to work on, so lessons learned during the course can immediately be applied to an example of interest. These projects can be discussed with the course organizers in advance to ensure they are appropriate. If participants do not have their own project one will be assigned to them during the course.

Next course dates:  April 2010.   Please contact Richard Pearson (pearson@amnh.org) for application deadlines and course descriptions.  For latest information on the course go to http://biodiversityinformatics.amnh.org/index.php?section_id=82&content_id=140

Instructors: The course will be taught by three instructors – Dr. Richard Pearson (American Museum of Natural History),  Jeff Silverman (American Museum of Natural History), and Steven Phillips (AT&T Labs-Research).

Course fee: $1,000 for each participant. The course fee includes room, board, and instruction in the class. Payment in full is due one month before the course begins. Unfortunately, scholarship funds to defray course expenses are not available. Participants will also need to provide their own transportation to and from the site.

Application: Those interested in participating in the course should send a short paragraph with the following information: name, contact details, current position (student, academia, government, etc.), brief statement on why you want to take the course, overview of prior modeling or GIS experience (if any), and a brief description of a project you would like to work on if you have one in mind.  Please send applications and questions about course logistics to Richard Pearson (pearson@amnh.org). 


Practical Remote Sensing Methods for Conservation Biologists

 

The course focuses on the practical aspects of remote sensing with the goal of providing sufficient information so that participants will be able to download and display satellite imagery for their area of interest, learn to interpret the imagery by making the connection between abstract image information and the landscape, and use this information to support a range of conservation objectives.  Participants work with visual image products and an overview of the automated land cover classification is presented including an assessment of the advantages of drawbacks of these map products.  The target audience is conservation researchers with little or no remote sensing experience. 

Those interested in the course should send a short paragraph with the following information:

1. Name, address, current position (academia, government, student etc..)

2. Brief reason why you want to take the course

3. Overview of prior remote sensing or GIS experience, if any

4. A brief description of a project you would like to work on if you have one in mind.

 

The next course is scheduled for TBA.  Click here for more information: http://cbc.rs-gis.amnh.org/training/cbc_workshops/practical_rs.html                          

 

Questions about the course content email horning@amnh.org

 

The Lepidopteran Course

The course is designed for students, amateur naturalists, conservation biologists, and other biologists who have an interest in learning more about butterfly and moth taxonomy.  It will emphasize taxonomy, ecology, and field identification of lepidopterans in southeastern Arizona.  Lectures will include background information on the biology of animals and their importance in pollination biology.  Field trips will provide participants with collecting, sampling, and observation techniques and lab work will provide instruction on specimen identification, preparation, and labeling.

For further information click here

 

Courses Hosted by the SWRS

 

Animal Behavior in the Chiricahua Mountains

This 10-day field course in Animal Behavior is being offered at the Southwestern Research Station. 

The course will involve a series of field studies with ants, spade foot toads, lizards, hummingbirds, and small mammals. It includes a daily multimedia lecture, and participation in projects and seminars conducted by scientists at the Research Station. Emphasis will be placed on research design and hypothesis testing. Projects may vary, to take advantage of weather conditions, species availability, and visiting scientists.

Next course is scheduled for 15-25 July, 2010.   For more information go to: http://www.animalbehaviorcourse.com

 

Bat Conservation International Workshop

 

BCI presents a comprehensive curriculum for an introductory field workshop designed to train serious students of bat conservation in the current research and management techniques for the study of bats.  Following an intensive 6-day, 5-night agenda, BCI biologists and professional colleagues will bring workshop participants a combination of lectures and discussions, field trips to view bat habitat resources, and hands-on training to catch and identify bats.

 

Participants gain experience with various capture techniques including mist-netting and harp-trapping.  They also use night-vision scopes, bat detectors, AnaBat recording equipment, radio-tracking devices, and light-tagging materials to investigate bats.

 

For further information: www.batcon.org/home/index.asp?idPage=30

 

  

The Ant Course

 

Designed for systematists, ecologists, behaviorists, conservation biologists, and other biologists whose research responsibilities require a greater understanding of ant taxonomy.  Emphasis is on the classification and identification of more than 50 ant genera of North America.  Lectures include background information on the ecology, life histories, and evolution of ants.  Field trips teach collecting and sampling techniques; associated lab work provides instruction on specimen preparation, sorting, and labeling.  Information on equipment/supply vendors, literature, and myrmecological contacts is also presented.

  

For further information:  http://www.calacademy.org/research/entomology/Ant_Course

 

The Bee Course

 

Designed primarily for botanists, conservation biologists, pollination ecologists, and other biologists whose research, training, or teaching responsibilities require a greater understanding of bee taxonomy.  Emphasizes classification and identification of more than 50 bee genera of North and Central America (both temperate and tropical), and the general information provided is applicable to the global bee fauna.  Lectures include background information on the biologies of bees, their floral relationships, their importance in maintaining and/or improving floral diversity, and the significance of oligolecty (i.e., taxonomic floral specialization).  Field trips acquaint participants with collecting and sampling techniques; associated lab work provides instruction on specimen identification, preparation and labeling.  Information on equipment/supply vendors, literature, and people resources is also presented.

 

For further information:  http://research.amnh.org/invertzoo/beecourse/