Undergraduate and Graduate Course Offering in
Experimental Herpetology
COURSE:     Experimental Herpetology  (3 Credit Hours)
                      Zoology 4970/5970   Section 052
                      University of Oklahoma Biological Station

INSTRUCTOR:     Dr. William I. Lutterschmidt
                              Assistant Professor, Sam Houston State University
                              Teaching Assistant:  To be announced

WHEN:     The First Two-week Summer Session in May


May 1999 May 2000

COURSE DESCRIPTION:   Experimental Herpetology is a course designed to introduce undergraduate and graduate students to the importance of amphibians and reptiles as model organisms in experimental biology.  Collecting techniques and methods for monitoring the behavior, activity, and physiology of amphibians and reptiles under field conditions will be emphasized.  Such monitoring techniques will include:  (1) telemetry and surgical implantation of radio transmitters for monitoring activity, thermoregulation, movement patterns, and habitat selection (2) the use and implantation of Passive Integrated Transponder (PIT) tags in field research, and (3) the extraction of body fluids for monitoring physiological changes in the field.  A laboratory component will also introduce students to the use of amphibians and reptiles in controlled laboratory experiments to investigate taxonomic differences in physiological performance.  Field collection of amphibians and reptiles will provide students with the opportunity to study and appreciate the taxonomic diversity of the Oklahoma herpetofauna.

TOPICS COVERED:   This course will emphasize experimental design and current research in herpetology.  Related topics will include taxonomy, systematics, evolution, anatomy and physiology, ecology, distribution, and natural history with topics of physiological ecology receiving the most attention.  Although this course will address the biology of all amphibians and reptiles, local species will receive the most emphasis.

LABORATORY:   Laboratories will include research on live animals and the use of preserved specimens to study the taxonomy, systematics, and comparative anatomy among different amphibian and reptilian families.  A field component will also introduce students to a variety of sampling and collecting techniques used to study the physiology, ecology, and natural history of these unique vertebrates.  Proper documentation of species occurrence and common museum practices will also be addressed.

TEXTS:  The following texts will be required and may be purchased at the University of Oklahoma Biological Station.
Conant R. and J.T. Collins.  1998.  Reptiles and Amphibians: Eastern and Central North America.  Peterson Field Guides, Houghton 
     Mifflin Co., NewYork, New York.
Black, J.H. and Sievert, G.  1989.  A Field Guide to Amphibians of Oklahoma.  Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation, Oklahoma City,
Sievert, L. and Sievert, G.  1989.  A Field Guide to Amphibians of Oklahoma.  Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation, Oklahoma City,

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:   Additional information regarding this course may be obtained by contacting Dr. William I. Lutterschmidt, Department of Biological Sciences, Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, Texas 77341.   Phone:  (409) 294-1556   E-mail:  bio_wil@shsu.edu

For enrollment information or a brochure contact the University of Oklahoma Biological Station (Norman Office:  405-325-5391).