Course Description

ONLINE: This course offers an in-depth introduction to the world of lemurs. Each lesson will be led by an expert from the world-renowned Duke Lemur Center. Students will have the opportunity to learn from the people leading the center’s critical work, which is to study and protect these unique animals in Durham and in Madagascar. While instructors will discuss lemurs throughout their classes, they will explore complex science and conservation themes through the focused lens that lemurs provide. They will also share fantastic photos and videos of the center's inhabitants. See topics below. | Lecture + Q&A.

Class sessions are recorded.

Duke Lemur Center Experts

May 1- Intro to Lemurs, Madagascar, and DLC

Megan McGrath, the education programs manager at the Duke Lemur Center, has been educating others about wildlife for her entire life, whether they wanted to hear it or not. Her professional career officially began 14 years ago as a big cat keeper and tour guide. She has led the center's education and tour program for over seven years, and has since made it her personal mission to introduce everyone to the wonderful and weird world of aye-ayes — a truly unique nocturnal lemur.

May 8- Lemur Evolution and Primate Origins

Matt Borths, Ph.D., is the curator of the Duke Lemur Center Museum of Natural History. Prior to joining the center's leadership team in 2018, Matt's passion for paleontology led him to study massive extinct carnivores and to create outreach initiatives to share what he learned. Matt is a champion of educational outreach and leads expeditions in places that range from Wyoming to Peru to Madagascar in search of the evolutionary origins of lemurs.

May 15- Non-Invasive Research at the DLC

Erin Ehmke, Ph.D., is the director of research at the Duke Lemur Center. Erin's desire to follow in the footsteps of her childhood hero Jane Goodall led her from a pre-veterinary track to years of field research experience studying monkeys in Panama and Suriname. Erin's role allows her to combine her primatology passion with her equal passion for educating and mentoring students looking to begin their own careers.

May 23- Positive Reinforcement Training in Lemur

Julie Ter Beest, D.V.M., is the supervising veterinarian at the Duke Lemur Center. When Julie joined the center in 2022, she brought expansive experience from her career as a zoo, wildlife and domestic animal veterinarian. In her tenure at the center, Julie has overseen all aspects of lemur veterinary care, from routine exams to critical cases to ensuring the health of new baby lemurs. She's seen it all.

May 30- Lemur Veterinary Care

Meg Dye is the curator of behavioral management and welfare at the Duke Lemur Center. Meg's decades-long career in animal training, behavioral management and welfare began with training dolphins, seals and sea lions, which led to a career consulting at zoos around the country on behavioral management and training practices. Meg's role at the center evolved to a permanent position on the curatorial team, ensuring the highest level of care for lemurs.

June 5- Community-Based Conservation

Charlie Welch is the conservation coordinator at the Duke Lemur Center. Charlie's decades-long career with the center began before the conservation program he now manages even existed. Charlie spent 15 years living in Madagascar, establishing the community relationships and programs that are foundational to the center's conservation program today, and gaining a wealth of knowledge and experience in community-based conservation in Madagascar.

Enroll Now - Select a section to enroll in
Section Title
Lemur 101: Duke’s Lemur Center
Online - Zoom
1:30PM to 2:45PM
May 01, 2024 to Jun 05, 2024
Schedule and Location
Contact Hours
Delivery Options
Virtual Classroom  
Course Fees
Section Notes

Class sessions are recorded.

Please note: Students will be given the opportunity to separately register for a final culminating event at the Duke Lemur Center in Durham, celebrating the end of the course by meeting the experts and lemurs introduced along the way.

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