Pre-Conference Workshops

Sunday, August 5th

This year’s WDA conference features three optional pre-conference workshops. Attendance is limited for each, so sign up early if you are interested in participating. Advance registration is required and will be available on the main conference registration form.

Optimal Diagnostic Sample Handling and Processing Techniques in Wildlife Health Assessment Studies

Time: 8:00am-12:00noon
Location: Renaissance World Golf Village
Capacity: 30 people
Cost: $40 per person
Includes light breakfast and morning break refreshments

Wildlife health assessments require tremendous effort on acquisition of funding and proper permits, as well as logistical planning on all aspects of sampling. Ensuring optimal sample handling and processing techniques provides the most accurate, consistent, and efficient data acquisition from health assessment studies. This workshop is composed of three sections: 1) focused review of available diagnostics used in health assessments related to any biological samples that can be collected from live animals (e.g., blood, urine, fecal, biopsies), 2) optimal sample handling and processing techniques with tips and tricks for clinical and molecular samples collected in field situations on a minimal budget, and 3) examples for field conditions with an interactive discussion on plan development and solutions. The lectures will be followed by a 30 minute practice session for slide preparation (e.g., blood films, cytology preparations).

Crocodile and Alligator Health Workshop

Time: 9:00am-4:00pm
Location: St. Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park
Capacity: 20 people
Cost: $85 per person
Includes lunch

The St. Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park works with other zoos and organizations around the world to ensure the survival of the many species in their collections. Prepare for some educational lectures indoors as well as time spent in the Florida heat participating in animal handling to include crocodilian capture, anesthesia and sample collection. Be sure to wear comfortable clothing, including long pants required for animal handling. Prepare to get wet!

Perspective on Management of Vampire Bat Populations in a One Health Context

Time: 1:00pm-5:00pm
Location: Renaissance World Golf Village
Capacity: 60 people
Cost: None
No refreshments included

Vampire bats are unique New World taxa, ranging from Mexico to Argentina. Based in part upon their obligate hematophagous lifestyle, these bats are responsible for major livestock losses and significant public health impacts, primarily associated with rabies. Updated information is needed for a variety of variables, including: detection of range expansion; pathogen detection and characterization; economic impacts; modeling of disease ecology; and management options. Subject matter experts from academia, government, industry and NGOs will address these topics and discuss current and future options with active audience participation.

The mission of the WDA for the past 65 years has been to acquire, disseminate, and apply knowledge of the health and diseases of wild animals in relation to their biology, conservation, and interactions with humans and domestic animals. Visit our website for more information about  the Wildlife Disease Association and instructions on how you can become a member.

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