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Thrissur, Wayanad, India

Program Description

Students will learn about tropical mammals in captive, wild and domesticated conditions. Students will explore the animal husbandry practices in rural and urban areas of Southern India.

Course work will include visits to field locations, local farms, zoos and sanctuaries; attending seminars and lectures at Kerala Veterinary and Animal Science University; exploring the university animal housing facilities; shadowing clinical procedures at animal hospitals; on-site lectures by program directors and local experts, and small group discussions on relevant topics.

Students will also be required to keep a self-reflective journal and submit a final project report. Students will be interacting with local farmers, veterinarians and wildlife experts to gain a deeper understanding of behavioral patterns of tropical mammals as well as management practices of animals in captivity. 

Location Description

Most of the instruction will take place at the Thrissur and Wayanad campuses of Kerala Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (KVASU). The state of Kerala, know as "God's own country" is luxurious with varying landscapes including mountain ranges, backwaters, beaches and a lot of coconut trees! Kerala is also very famous for its food culture, with a variety of delicious dishes unique to the state.

Thrissur is located in the very center of the state and is known as its cultural capital. Thrissur is at sea level with the Arabian Sea (54 km) on the west. Descending from the heights of the Western Ghats in the east, the land slopes towards the west forming three distinct natural divisions - the highlands, the plains and the sea board. There are several rivers which take their origin from the mountains on the east, and flow westward and discharge into the Arabian Sea. There are waterfalls such as Athirappilly Falls which is widely known as the "Indian Niagara" nowadays. There is a Zoo, an elephant sanctuary and few museums in and around the city. There are backwater boat rides in the nearby town. The district has a tropical humid climate with an oppressive hot season and plentiful and seasonal rainfall. Annual rainfall is about 3000 mm. The hot season from March to May is followed by the South West Monsoon season from June to September.

Wayanad is a hill station in north-east Kerala with part of the Western Ghats in it. Wayanad is of historical importance since archeologists claim that humans inhabited Wayanad forests around 3000 years ago. Wayanad is one of the popular tourist spots in Kerala owing to its natural beauty and cooler climate. Wayanad is home to many endangered species and blessed with lots of greenery, streams and mountains.


Bisi Velayudhan | | Biology

Pradeep Vasudevan | | Biology


Two students will be sharing a room with double bed, a desk, a closet and attached bathroom. The hotel is in the heart of the city and daily transport to the university will be arranged.

Hotel is equipped with wifi, laundry facilities and common rooms. The university is at 20 min walking distance from the hotel. Transportation will be arranged for daily commute to the university. Accommodation will be arranged for students while visiting other cities as a part of this program.

Students will be allocated a weekly stipend for one meal a day, which they can use while on their own (this will be either lunch or dinner, depending on the day’s activities). Breakfast and one other meal a day will be provided as part of the program. Students will have access to budget eateries, supermarkets, and college canteens.

Additional Items to Consider

Travel from city to city will take place by public transportation or taxi service. We will spend a few days visiting local historic and tourist stations.

Visas and special immunizations are required. Students will be informed about the required immunizations and other health plans in a timely manner.

Applicant Criteria

Applicants must have a GPA minimum of 2.5

Prerequisites: BIO 114 or BIO 140 (or equivalent)

Application Process

This list serves as an application preview. To apply, students will need to complete the following:

  • Study Abroad Online Application ($25 fee)
  • Short essay 
  • Interview with Program Director may be required
  • Official transcript required for non-JMU and first semester transfer students.

Further details and instructions about these application requirements will be available upon log-in. 

Program Closed.

Application Deadline


All dates are tentative and subject to change


BIO 427: A Field Study on Tropical Mammalogy (3 credits)

Courses listed here are to be used as a general guideline for program curriculum. *All courses are considered pending until approved by the Academic Department, Program, and/or College.


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