Tiger Conservation & Vertebrate Field Methods

Tiger Conservation & Vertebrate Field Methods — About

About Tiger Conservation & Vertebrate Field Methods

Explore Thailand’s culture and conservation challenges by applying a set of well-developed field survey and conservation tools. There are many threatened species  in this region, including tigers, wild elephants, wild cattle and more than 600 species of birds.

Program Dates

December 27, 2017 - January 15, 2018, The application deadline is October 1, 2017 


Interested in studying tigers? You'll do some of that in Thailand, where you will study cultural and conservation challenges. CFANS has been a principal partner in a long-term tiger conservation project, and one of the highlights of this course will be working on that project in a "biodiversity hotspot." Activities will include camera-trapping techniques, prey assessment methods, and radio telemetry approaches to the study of tigers and other large mammals. Your adventure begins with a two-day trip up Thailand's central waterway on a live-aboard barge designed for research and education. Then you'll travel to Thailand's premier conservation research site, home base for daily field activities and a launching point for a wilderness trip into more remote parts of western Thailand. Not only will you experience the beauty and diversity of Thailand – as part of a team, you will research and gain an understanding of landscape-scale conservation strategies and methods to study large mammals and birds.

Course Description

CFAN 3504: Students will learn about sustainability, wildlife, conservation, and management of natural resources. This course fulfills the Global Perspectives Liberal Education theme.

Program Leaders

Dave Smith and Francesca Cuthbert are professors in the Department of Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology. Smith has a special interest in biology and conservation of mammals in Asia, specifically tigers, their social organization and dispersal patterns. Cuthbert's special interest is in biology and conservation of water birds.


This Thailand course is a hands-on experience and includes these highlights:

A two day trip up Thailand’s major waterway on a live-aboard barge designed for research and education

Nearly two weeks of instruction and fieldwork at Thailand’s premier conservation research site (Khao Nang Rum Wildlife Research Center) in the heart of the Western Forest Complex

A two day stay at Thailand’s major freshwater wetland, Bongborapet, to mist-net and band birds

Housing & Meals

Students will be housed in a hotel in Bangkok; on a live-aboard barge for two nights; plus bungalows and tents/hammocks. Students are responsible for bringing a sleeping bag. Most meals will be provided.

Program Fee

The program fee is $4500 and includes instruction, orientation, program administration, international health insurance, airfare and in-country transportation, lodging, orientation, and most meals.

Cost of Participation

Application deadline

 The application deadline is October 1, 2017 

More Information

For more information please contact CFANS Office of International Programs at ipglobal@umn.edu, or Maggie Wallenta at walle104@umn.edu