U​niversity of Wisconsin - Stevens Point

Guide to Academic Programs & Careers

Captive Wildlife

College of Natural Resources
Sue Kissinger, Coordinator of Advising and Recruitment
Room 180, College of Natural Resources
UW - Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI 54481
(715) 346-4081
Email: skissing@uwsp.edu


A minor in Captive Wildlife Management will allow students to gain knowledge and expertise to work in zoos, wildlife rehabilitation centers and other facilities with captive wildlife.

Why Study Captive Wildlife at UWSP?

Program strengths include an integrated resource management curriculum, the intern program, field-oriented instruction, small upper-level class size, intensive academic advising, summer field camp and optional field study in Germany, Australia, Costa Rica and Africa. There is also a strong internship program in captive wildlife.

High School Preparation

To prepare for a minor in captive wildlife, high school students should focus on courses in biology, chemistry, mathematics, computers, and communication.

Department Features

The six members of the wildlife program have expertise in conservation biology, avian ecology, predator ecology, wetland ecology, animal behavior, captive wildlife, urban wildlife, population dynamics, and landscape ecology. The student chapter of the Wildlife Society provides students with a variety of practical experiences and has been recognized numerous times as the largest and most active chapter in the country.

Career Opportunities

Students who graduate with​ majors in Wildlife, Biology, or Environmental Education/ Interpretation and a minor in Captive Wildlife can expect to find employment at zoos, nature centers, wildlife rehabilitation centers, the Humane Society, plus numerous state and federal agencies. In addition, the required course internships and summer work experiences will increase your employability.

​Sample Program of Study

Required courses for the Captive Wildlife Minor: 27 credits

  1. Required Courses
    • Wildlife 321 - Principles of Captive Wildlife Management - 2 credits
    • Wildlife 322 - Techniques of Captive Wildlife Management - 2 credits
    • Wildlife 458 - Wildlife Ecology and Conservation Biology
      or NRES 458 - Biodiversity and Conservation Biology - 3 credits
    • Biology 281 - Animal Physiology - 4 credits
    • Biology 364 - Animal Parasitology - 4 credits

  2. Three credits from the following (Note: topics must involve captive wildlife):
    • Wildlife 305 - Selected Topics in Wildlife Management - 1-3 credits ​
    • Biology 498 - Selected Topics in Biology - 1-3 credits
    • Biology 388 - Animal Behavior - 3 credits

  3. Three credits from the following:
    • Wildlife 381 - Internship (involving captive animals) - 1-12 credits, 3 of which can apply to the minor
    • Biology 499 - Internship (involving captive animals) - 1-6 credits, 3 of which can apply to the minor

  4. Six credits from the following:
    • Natural Resources 320 - Natural Resources and Public Relations
      or Natural Resources 368 - Oral Interpretation Methods - 3 credits
    • Wildlife 372 - Wildlife of North America - 3 credits

​Graduates at Work

Wildlife Educator
Milwaukee Zoo

Wildlife Rehabilitator
Northwoods Wildlife Center

Humane Society

Wildlife Technician
Wisconsin DNR