Training Opportunities

ABNC Lectures | AgriLife Ed | ALL: TMN Tuesdays |
Goose Island Bird Events | Surf Museum Lectures | Texas Maritime Museum |
Online AT | See Training Opps from State

Find a new training opportunity?

  1. Check it against Criteria and against Advanced Training Approved in the Past.
  2. Fill out an approval request form if the opportunity is new and meets criteria.

Report here! TMN Hours Entry Login  ||  Get VMS Help here! VMS Links  ||  VMS Opportunity List

    Bird Events at Goose Island State Park

    January through April, Goose Island sponsors Shorebird, Woodland, and Big Tree Natural Area Walks. Check with Park Headquarters for the meeting locations as you enter the park. For more information go to for postings during the months these walks are offered.

    VMS Opportunity listing – AT: Single Presentation

    Aransas Bird and Nature Club Lectures

    ABNC brownbag meetings and lectures are held at the Aquarium at Rockport Harbor Education Center beginning at 11:30.

    • 2/14 – Big Tree Natural Area – Ben Horstmann
    • 3/21 – ‘Cause You’ve Got Personality – Birds with Charisma – Sally Mitchell
    • 4/11 – Young Birders program

    You do not have to be an ABNC member to attend these lectures. VMS Opportunity listing – AT: Lecture Series presentation

    AgriLife Extension Educational Series

    For the dates and subject offerings, go to: for the most current information. Many of these sessions pertain to subjects that meet our educational requirements and mission. When in doubt as to whether the series will be approved as AT, please contact the AT Director here.

    VMS Opportunity listing – AT: Lecture Series presentation

    TMN Tuesdays: Academy of Lifelong Learning

    The Texas Master Naturalist Series, TMN Tuesdays, is provided by members of Mid-Coast Chapter, Texas Master Naturalist as part of the Academy of Lifelong Learning (ALL), a project of Victoria College. Attendees must be members of ALL. The annual membership fee is $50. Participants will learn about local plants, animals, and ecosystems as well as ways to enjoy and support our region’s natural resources. VMS Opportunity listing – AT: Lecture Series presentation

    For the most current information on each semester’s seminars, go to

    ALL Membership entitles you to participate in any of the Academy of Lifelong Learning activities offered during the fall and spring semesters at no additional charge, with the exception to a few activities that have a supply or travel fee. These are noted in the schedule. More information about ALL

    Texas Maritime Museum Lectures

    These brown-bag lectures are offered at noon on Mondays at the Texas Maritime Museum, 1202 Navigation Circle, Rockport, TX 78382. VMS Opportunity listing – AT: Lecture Series presentation

    • Feb 5—Kelsey Gibson—”Real-Time Tracking of Texas’ Marine Apex Predators”
    • Feb 19—Dr. Amy Borgens—Update on her recent marine archeological projects
    • Feb 26—Dr. Christopher Mace—”The Effects of Hurricane Harvey on the Fisheries of Aransas Bay”
    • Mar 5—Dr. Wade Harrell and Laura Bonneau—Annual whooping crane update
    • Mar 19—Pam Wheat Stranahan—Archaeology of the Coastal Bend

    Texas Master Naturalists Annual Meeting

    Most of the seminars during this 3-day conference in Georgetown, Texas during the month of October should qualify as AT. For details on the seminars to be offered, please refer to the Agenda:

    Texas Surf Museum

    Text should be: Each quarter, a number of Speaker Series will be offered, many of which pertain to subjects that meet our educational requirements and mission. Please refer to the following link for the time and most current information: When in doubt as to whether the series will be approved as AT, please contact the AT Director here.

    UTMSI Film & Discussion Series

    The following free films range in time from 15-60 minutes followed by a group discussion and have been approved as advanced training. Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3 – 4 p.m. in the UTMSI Auditorium.

    Watch this space for next season’s lectures.

    Normally TMN State does not approve of movies and TV shows as advanced training, but the discussion led by UTMSI personnel adds an additional educational element. VMS Opportunity listing – AT: Lecture Series presentation

    Whooper Photo Analysis—another session TBD

    Dr. Liz Smith is in need of volunteers to look at photos and record animals—especially whooping cranes—using freshwater ponds in our area. Your participation will contribute to a much better understanding of whooping crane needs and behavior. Watch this space for the next training session next fall. VMS Opportunity listing – AT: Specific-Project

    Online Advanced Training

    Monarch Butterfly Conservation Webinar Series

    The USFWS partnered with the Monarch Joint Venture to develop a series of webinars on monarch biology, monitoring, and conservation:

    • Assessment of Exotic Milkweed (A. curassavica) and the Spread of Disease in Monarchs
    • Conserving of Monarchs in the Western US
    • Conserving Monarch Butterflies in an Urban Setting
    • Contributions of Monarch Citizen Science & Program Overviews
    • Designing Seed Mixes for Native Habitat
    • Enhancing Existing Landscapes for Monarch/Native Pollinators
    • Growing Milkweed for Monarch Conservation
    • Habitat Restoration Fundamentals
    • And more… 

    Click here for details on all sessions. VMS Opportunity listing – AT: Online Training

    Ornithology: Comprehensive Bird Biology

    Cornell Lab of Ornithology provides an online format enriched by videos and interactive animations. This self-paced course uses the new third-edition of the Handbook of Bird Biology textbook. Course learners earn digital badges for passing quizzes. Those who pass the course receive a printed certificate signed by Cornell Lab director Dr. John W. Fitzpatrick. Read more about the textbook and online course. Course enrollment costs $239 and the textbook costs $135 ($199 and $121.50, respectively, for Lab members). 

    Colonial Waterbird ID

    Online video details the differences between adult, juvenile and adult breeding coastal waterbirds including terns & gulls, egrets, herons, pelicans, skimmers, and spoonbills. Colonial Waterbird videoVMS Opportunity listing – AT: Online Training

    Trash/Fishing Line Impacts on Wildlife

    Two online videos from the Audubon Texas Estuarine Resource Network present:

    • why people litter and what can be done to change their habits (0.75 hrs)
    • how coastal trash, especially fishing line, is impacting pelicans and other coastal wildlife (0.50 hrs)

    VMS Opportunity listing – AT: Online Training

    Invaders of Texas Online Training

    Do you want to help slow the spread of harmful invasive plant species and reduce their ecological and economic damage? The first step is to locate where invaders have arrived and get that information to those who can do something about it. Approved training is now available online . Once you are trained, download the free app for your phone and go for it! VMS Opportunity listing – AT: Online Training

    Plant Walks

    Learn to identify the plants of the:

    • Aransas National Wildlife Refuge – Heron Flats Trail
    • Linda S. Castro Nature Sanctuary in Rockport
    • Sunset Lake Park in Portland
    • Welder Wildlife Refuge – River Walk or Nature Trail
    • Other locations at your request

    Training walks can be set up to study the plants in several seasons. Participants will learn to identify plants for their own pleasure, or to lead native plant walks for site visitors. If you are interested in the training, contact Kris Kirkwood. VMS Opportunity listing – AT: Single presentation

    Make your Own Training Opportunity

    If a new volunteer opportunity you are pursuing includes training, fill out the Training Approval Request. If the training is part of an approved volunteer service, it is automatically approved. Watch local news sources for seminars or classes on local-area ecosystems, wildlife, native plants, or natural resource management, check them against advanced training criteria. If the training seems to meet these criteria, request approval. If the Education & Training committee approves the training, it can be offered to the entire Chapter. Check the State ListServ email to see if other Chapters are offering training applicable to our area.

    Want to See State Training Opportunities by E-Mail?

    The Texas Master Naturalist Listserv is a communications media hosted by Texas A&M  at no charge to Texas Master Naturalists. The purpose of the TMN Listserv is to provide a means of quickly distributing news, announcements, notification of events, grant opportunities and other items pertinent to Texas Master Naturalists. To sign up for this free service (you may unsubscribe at any time), please follow the instructions below:

    1. Complete the Texas Master Naturalist Listserv Sign-up submission form (there is no fee for the Listserv and you may unsubscribe at any time)
    2. Click the SUBMIT button on the form
    3. Within a few minutes you should receive a confirmation request from the Listserv. You MUST reply to this confirmation or you will NOT be added to the Listserv.
    4. Again, within a few minutes you should receive a message similar to the following:
      “Your subscription to the Texas Master Naturalist list has been accepted.”

    That’s all there is to joining! You should receive announcements automatically via the email from which you signed up. If your email address changes, you will need to register again.

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