March 2016 Training Course
Advanced Training Course
Inspired by AJWCEF’s Advanced Course Tamao Ishibashi
I participated in the advanced training course because I wanted to know about veterinarians overseas and the current state of wildlife conservation in Australia and Japan as well as any differences. I had heard a bit about AJWCEF’s training courses at a seminar given by Dr. Mizuno at my school and I had wanted to take part in one for a long time. I was really glad I had the chance to take part in the training course this time. On the course I was able to see Australian native animals such as marsupials like koalas and possums; monotremes like echidna and other peculiar birds and snakes that you couldn’t normally see up close or in detail. I was also able to learn about some of the technical aspects of veterinary medicine such as the treatment, rehabilitation and anatomy of those animals. In addition to this, we visited a koala hospital and other government conservation facilities as well as doing some kayak wildlife observation.
During the 9 days, the thing that I found the most impressive was that in Australia there were many people who volunteered and donated to conservation facilities that would not be viable without their contribution. I felt that the reason there were many people involved like this was due to a lot of media coverage and a high level of interest in animals and nature. I had many opportunities to talk about things like society and the government during the training course and I could feel how deeply people were concerned.
I realised how I had so much more to learn about everything like English, veterinary science, wildlife, nature, politics and society. I hope to learn much more from now on and make use of what I have gained from this training program in the future. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the AJWCEF staff, the staff at the training facilities and everyone who took part in the training course with me for making this experience so amazing.
Introductory Training Course
I had a very rewarding spring holiday during my first year of university because I participated in this year’s training course. I was nervous about many things before I left, as it was my first time overseas where I would be living with and cooking with people I had never met. However, I got on so well with the people in my group it was as if we had lived together before so we all became close and I enjoyed the days we spent together.
I have always been interested in the co-existence of wildlife and people. Also, I liked the cute and interesting animals native to Australia. When I found out about this course I thought, ‘What a great opportunity!’ After it finished I thought about the many things I was able to gain from this intensive program. I was able to have so many valuable experiences that I would never have been able to do if I had came merely for sightseeing. Everything was so new to me from the behavioral observation and caring for endangered animals to studying their anatomy and the kayak wildlife observation. The rangers and staff were very diligent in their instructions so I learned a lot and I was so excited to be able to see and interact with animals up close. I was also given the chance to think about a range of issues by finding out the different thoughts and perspectives regarding the current state of wildlife across Australia by talking directly to rangers, veterinarians and volunteers who were working with wildlife every day.
I was surprised by how different Australia was to Japan as there were wildlife hospitals that were run entirely through the work of volunteers and various donations. I think every country would have a different way of thinking regarding wildlife but I felt that people were more concerned about wildlife in Australia than in Japan. I have become even more interested in Australia and hope to take this opportunity to look towards Japan and my future so that I can really consider what I should do from here. I was really glad I was able to broaden my horizons by participating in this training course. I learned the importance of challenging new things and I hope to build up experience by doing a variety of things hereafter. I’d like to thank everyone for looking out for me during this program.