The Wildlife Habitat Education Program (WHEP) is an environmental education program for youth ages 8-19 that teaches all about wildlife habitat and damage management through hands-on activities. This program is the largest of its kind in the nation, and has been awarded the Conservation Education Award by The Wildlife Society, the only professional organization that certifies wildlife biologists around the world.
Purdue Extension's "WHEP - Wildlife Habitat Education Program" video takes a deeper look at the program through the testimonials of students and staff members involved with the program, including Extension Wildlife Specialist Rob Chapman and Professor of Wildlife Ecology Rod Williams.
Each year, WHEP has a national contest for its senior level (ages 14-19) youth consisting of three individual events and one team event. The first event, the wildlife challenge, consists of 30 general knowledge questions and 20 animal identifications based on skins and/or skulls. With only 30 minutes allowed for this event, it can be a challenging task.
Competitors can look to the WHEP manual for help studying for the general knowledge questions. The new publication "Wildlife Habitat Evaluation Program: Preparing for the Wildlife Challenge" assists further by providing flashcards for all of the species found on the identification questions, complete with pictures of the animal's skins and a list of characteristics. Practicing with these flashcards is an extremely effective way to learn the material and perform better in the event.
This year's event has come to a close, with 1st place going to Tennessee, 2nd place to Alabama, and 3rd to North Carolina. Study with the "Wildlife Habitat Evaluation Program: Preparing for the Wildlife Challenge" publication to prepare for next year!
Wildlife Habitat Evaluation Program: Preparing for the Wildlife Challenge- The Education Store, Purdue Extension Resource Center
National WHEP Manual - Wildlife Habitat Education Program
Indiana Wildlife Habitat Education Program (WHEP) - Purdue University Youth Development & Agricultural Education
Developing a Wildlife Habitat Management Plan - The Education Store
Wildlife Habitat Education Program - Teaching and Learning Wildlife Management Practices - The Education Store
Rod Williams, Professor of Wildlife Ecology
Purdue University Department of Forestry and Natural Resources