NPS Wildlife Anesthesia Certification

Scott Ratchford
Primary contact: Scott Ratchford
Where: Fort Collins, CO
Jan 28 - 31, 2020


Natural resource management and research programs conducted in national parks may require administration of pharmaceuticals to wildlife. Most of the pharmaceuticals used for wildlife are federally regulated to help safeguard human and animal health.  National Park Service staff must possess adequate knowledge and experience in the use of pharmaceuticals for wildlife to assure human safety and to provide an adequate standard for professional care.

In this course, participants will receive instruction by NPS veterinarians from the Biological Resources Division, Wildlife Health Branch on topics and skills related to use of pharmaceuticals in wildlife through lectures and hands-on training. A live-animal field capture will be conducted if possible, and students will have the opportunity to become familiar with various remote delivery systems on a range.

This course fulfills the required certification for use of pharmaceuticals in wildlife for management or research purposes under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian as described in NPS-77 and draft DO 77-4.

Learning Objectives

At the end of the course, participants will be:

  • Familiar with wildlife immobilization techniques, pharmacology, animal welfare monitoring and treatment, and animal and human safety when using pharmaceuticals in wildlife.
  • Able to accurately calculate drug doses and prepare and administer pharmaceuticals using proper techniques.
  • Familiar with the laws and policies regarding use of pharmaceuticals and capture equipment, and the application of animal welfare regulations to natural resource management activities within NPS.

Estimated Completion Time

28 Hour/s


Supervisory approval is required for this class. Once your supervisor has approved your application, you will be added to the waitlist. Selections will be made once registration has closed.

Target Audience

NPS employees with direct responsibilities for capture, immobilization, or euthanasia of wildlife within NPS units (e.g. natural resource managers, wildlife biologists, law enforcement).

Class Hours

Tu 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
W 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Th 7:00 am - 4:00 pm
F 8:00 am - 12:00 pm


Any travel is to be paid by the benefiting account. For participants who will be flying, ground travel time from Denver International Airport to Fort Collins is approximately 70 minutes.

Lodging in Fort Collins is $103/night. M & IE is $61.

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