On behalf of the 100 plus delegates and us all here at ZSL and the BIAZA Animal Behaviour and Training Working group I would like to say what you did at the BIAZA certified enrichment building practical activity last week was nothing short of phenomenal. I am still buzzing from the session it was a real highlight of the two day workshop and I still cant believe we pulled it off! During the planning process it was difficult to visualise exactly how it would look as there were so many variables, including weather and number of delegates, so I am very grateful that you were able to steer the session so successfully. I felt the three organisations (ZSL,BIAZA ABTWG and yourselves) worked together well and I put that down to no-one having an ego and everyone putting the delegates (and animals) first. From the perspective of future events I suppose it would have been better if we knew further in advance what devices and species we were going to work with but that is down to the host institution not you, and it was difficult to plan to far ahead as we only knew the exact amount of delegates two weeks before the event .For future reference I would maybe advise another host to invite you in a couple more times before the actual day to sort out logistics and maybe meet the team leaders, other staff and organisers? We asked all delegates to complete feedback forms before the end of the workshop and the enrichment building session and the learning aims associated with this received 100% positive feedback with every delegate agreeing, or strongly agreeing, that the learning aims were met. thanks for everything Mark, it was a brilliant day! Jim Mackie Chair - BIAZA Animal Behaviour and Training Working Group
It was the most fun I have ever had at an enrichment workshop at a conference or other professional development workshop. The hands on building not only taught you how to make different enrichment mechanisms but was a great team building exercise as well. During the lecture and brainstorming component we came up with ideas that I never would have on my own. I can't wait to implement some of the ideas with the animals I work with.
Mark and Chris were absolutely fantastic instructors on this course. We booked a 1-day Shape of Enrichment course so that our second year FdSc Zoological Management students could learn vital practical enrichment building skills, as well as learn first hand about the practicalities, health and safety involved in designing and implementing enrichment items. I cannot fault the service provided, and we will re-book the course for our students next year, without hesitation.
The course was for making enrichment for wild equids, and designed for Zoo Keepers. The feed back from all 46 delegates was excellent. Mark was really informative and the instructions were really easy to follow. I would recommend any enrichment course that Mark does for any level. Totally brilliant and inspiring day
I asked The Shape of Enrichment to once again put on a workshop for my students at Howletts as it was such a hit last year. The item of enrichment made was a good idea and most students managed to complete it. Perhaps in the future a slightly longer time would be good, say 60 mins rather than 45 mins if the build is more complex. It was a good day and hopefully some of what they have learnt will appear in future assignments!
This was a workshop held at the BIAZA Mammal Working Group annual conference. It was a full day session held for the keepers that attended the conference. The workshop was excellent, covering both splicing and fire hose enrichment construction. Both Mark and Chris, the trainers, were incredibly enthusiastic and taught the subjects well. They both were always on hand to help on a one to one basis when required, something that was a god-send for me when it comes to splicing! All in all I can't sing the praises of this course or it's trainers enough. Excellent.