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  • A m p h i b i a n F o u n d a t i o n

    Protecting Amphibians and Their Habitats

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Latest News43% of the World's Amphibians are in Decline

According to the IUCN, 43% of the world's amphibians are in catastrophic decline, or already extinct. This percentage is higher than declining mammals and birds combined. Amphibians are disappearing from pristine environments, as well as developed areas. Find out more about how you can help — starting right in your own backyard!

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  • Amphibian Foundation

    We’re an Atlanta-based nonprofit that leads one-of-a-kind conservation research programs to address threats in the southeastern United States and across the globe.
    We provide unique educational opportunities for all ages to learn about amphibians and inspire conservation.
    Established in 2016 by Mark and Crystal Mandica, we collaborate with partners in the fight against amphibian extinction.

    Join Us!

    The Amphibian Foundation relies on support in the form of annual and sustaining memberships. Our membership program provides the support needed to continue our conservation programs & gives members opportunities to get further involved!

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  • Captive Propagation

    ‘The only hope for populations and species at imminent risk of extinction is the immediate rescue for the establishment and management of captive survival-assurance colonies’
ACAP 2006 Report.
    Working with state, federal and international partners, the Amphibian Foundation develops novel, species-specific conservation programs, as outlined in the Amphibian Conservation Action Plan (ACAP 2006).
    The goals of which are always to experimentally release healthy captive-produced offspring into protected and managed habitat.
    The ultimate goal is that these species will no longer need our protection and will be safe, once again, in the wild.
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Mission: Dedicated to connecting individuals, communities
 & organizations in order to create & implement lasting solutions to the global amphibian extinction crisis.

Master Herpetologist Program

The Master Herpetologist Program is offered at the Amphibian Foundation and instructed jointly between the Foundation and Zoo Atlanta's Herpetology Department.

Amphibian Foundation and Zoo Atlanta

This intensive class provides an introduction to herpetology and equips participants with amphibian and reptile identification skills and general knowledge of frogs, salamanders, turtles, lizards and snakes — their life histories, habitat requirements and biodiversity.

Instructors: Mark Mandica, Executive Director, Amphibian Foundation; Robert Hill, Assistant Curator of Herpetology, Zoo Atlanta; Joe Mendelson, Director of Research, Zoo Atlanta and Adjunct Associate Professor at GA Tech; and John Jensen, State Herpetologist for Georgia DNR and editor of our course text book.

Course content includes classification and identification of amphibians and reptiles, 'herping' equipment, frog calls, attracting amphibians/reptiles and backyard wildlife habitat, anatomy and physiology, ecology, behavior, breeding migration, and conservation. This course is a deep dive into the world of amphibians and reptiles, with special focus placed on the critters of the southeast.

The course fee includes lectures and 2 field trips, a signed copy of Amphibians and Reptiles of Georgia (Jensen, et al), and a graduation luncheon. Throughout the year, Master Herpers may be offered early bird or discounted registration for workshops and other reptile and amphibian events in and around Georgia.

The course meets approximately every other Saturday from 10 am until 3pm (with a break for lunch). The course is intended for adults, but there is no age limit.


Winter / Spring 2019

Week One (Jan 5th): Introduction
Week Two (Jan 19th): Salamanders
Week Three (Feb 2nd): Frogs
**one week delay due to Southeast Partners in Amphibian & Reptile Conservation conference, which the instructors will be attending**
Week Four (Feb 23rd): Amphibian Field Trip Clyde Shepherd Nature Preserve
Week Five (March 2nd): Turtles
Week Six (March 16th): Snakes
Week Seven (March 30th): Reptile Field Trip Sweetwater Creek
Week Eight (April 13th): Graduate Luncheon


The Amphibian Foundation is located at the beautiful, 30 acre, Blue Heron Nature Preserve in Buckhead (Atlanta, GA). The main building on the grounds holds 3 of the Foundation's research labs, office space and classrooms, as well as Atlanta Audubon Society, and the Blue Heron Nature Preserve's administration offices and classrooms. It is a hub for urban ecology and conservation right in Atlanta. The course will be held in the Amphibious AF Meeting Room.

This class is not wheelchair accessible


Would you like to see the Master Herpetologist offered on a weekday?

Your input is valued as we asses the possibility of offering a Master Herpetologist Program during the week. Please choose one of the answers below.