Hosted by Parco Natura Viva, Italy (19 - 22 March, 2024) #EAZAWF24


A very warm welcome to you all from Parco Natura Viva! I’m really proud to be the host of the second EAZA Animal Welfare Forum.

Many of you may have already visited our country and may have joined us for past conferences we held. This new opportunity is challenging and exciting for my staff and myself, longing,  to meet you all.

You’ll discover an amazing region by Garda Lake, only few kilometers from Verona, here stands Parco Natura Viva Zoological garden,  more than half century of history, guided by passion :  It was the vision of my father in the late ‘60’s to create a park from the perspective of animals, where people are merely guests. Our animals are free roaming or housed on islands, in the Safari area. Also in the fauna Park some of them are housed in islands and others in naturalist exhibits with natural boundaries where possible. As humans we are guests in animal world, and this has led to a unique park with over 40 hectares of naturalistic settings with more than 200 species and 1500 animals.

I’m still looking forward,  getting busy in more in situ projects with a brand new foundation we run, but also  improving our visitors experience, hoping to rise even more involvement by spreading the aim of our EAZA community.

I warmly invite you all to subscribe to the coming conference, promising that it will be an amazing one, with an assessment of the topics from EAZA, always worthy and useful for all of us and a welcome in the smoothest and sweetest Italian style, with our well know specialties of course, but also our gorgeous countryside. We’ll have an amazing tour of our place, we are so proud of, ending the visit with one of our specialties: risotto and wine.

Then, for a sparkling end, a farewell dinner that will surprise and rock you !

Cesare Avesani Zaborra

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Conference venue

The congress centre of Parc Hotel Paradiso & Golf Resort in Peschiera del Garda has 10 conference rooms of different seating capacity. All of them are fully equipped with cutting-edge technology.

The resort also offers four different hotel facilities (two 4-star hotels, two aparthotels) that have more than enough beds (see accommodation information below); hundreds of parking spaces outdoor and indoor; bars and restaurants; a wide range of post-congress activities, as it includes a wellness centre and a sports centre. See practical info and a map of the resort here

The congress centre is located in a strategic position, at a short distance from the A4 Milan-Venice motorway, from Peschiera del Garda’s train station, and from Verona airport.

Click here to find a brochure and aerial view of the resort and its adjacent hotels and restaurants

Venue address: Via Brolo2/a – 37014 Castelnuovo del Garda

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The congress centre of Parc Hotel Paradiso & Golf Resort in Peschiera del Garda can be reached by car or taxi. 

Taxi Peschiera del Garda
Taxi Verona

If you travel by train (Trenitalia or Tainline) you can go to:

  • Verona Porta Nuova Station - (20 km, taxi on site)
  • Peschiera Del Garda Station - (4 km, taxi on site)

If you travel by plane you can take a taxi from Verona Airport (20 km, taxi on site), Milano Airport BGY (89 km, taxi on site) or Venezia Airport (145 km, taxi on site). You can also investigate travelling options from several airport and cities to Verona by Flixbus

More information about travelling options to Parc Hotel Paradiso & Golf Resort can be found here



Keynote speaker

T. V. Joe Layng is a Fellow of the Association for Behavior Analysis International and was the 2020 recipient of the APA: Division 25 Fred S. Keller Behavioral Education Award. He is an adjunct professor at the Institute for Applied Behavioral Science, Endicott College. Joe has over 50 years of experience in the experimental and applied analysis of behavior with a particular focus on the design of teaching/learning environments. He was a Dean at Malcolm X College in Chicago where he founded the award winning Personalized Curriculum Institute. In 1999, he co-founded Headsprout where Joe led the scientific team that developed the technology that formed the basis of the company’s patented Early Reading and Reading Comprehension online reading programs used by millions of children. Joe has spent the last several years bringing important concepts from the experimental and applied analysis of behaviour to those working with animals.

AWF24 Joe Layng promo

Plenary speaker

Christian Agrillo is Associate Professor at the University of Padova and the President of the Italian Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour (“Società Italiana di Etologia”, SIE). He has published more than a hundred papers of cognition/perception in non-human animals, from apes to bees, with particular regard to numerical abilities of animals and susceptibility to visual illusions.

AWF24 Christian Agrillo promo



Download the Whova Conference app via this link

Admission fees

Full conference, early rate  430
Full conference, regular rate €535
Single day, early rate 150
Single day, regular rate €180

Early bird rate was available until 22 January 2024, student discount fees are not available. 

Please take notice of the following EAZA Events cancellation policy (This policy also applies to the EAZA Academy course):

  • If you cancel more than four weeks before the event starts you will be reimbursed the full registration fee minus €50,- handling charges.
  • If you cancel less than four weeks before the event starts you will be charged 25% of the fees.
  • If you cancel less than two weeks before the event starts you will be charged 50% of the fees. 

Cancellations one week prior to the event will not be refunded

It is your responsibility to ensure that your cancellation for the Academy course/EAZA Animal Welfare Forum is confirmed by the EAZA Academy or the EAZA Office respectively.

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For bookings and reservations please send an email to booking-resort@parchotels.it and refer to the promo code 'AWF2024' if you want to make to use of the special delegate rates below.   

Hotel Description Rates
Residence Eden ** 

Apartments 200/300 meters
from the Parc Hotel congress center

Double room (1 pax) €65 p.n.
Double room (2 pax) €89 p.n.
Triple room (3 pax) €109 p.n.

Parc Hotel  ****  Modern and elegant Hotel with recently renovated rooms Double room (1 pax) €72 p.n.
Double room (2 pax) €99 p.n.
Active Hotel Paradiso & Golf ****

Country chic style property surrounded by
greenery adjacent to the club house / Golf Club

Double room (1 pax) €72 p.n.
Double room (2 pax) €99 p.n.

Please note that prices are VAT included but city tax is not (Approx. €1,5 pax/day in 4 stars hotels and €1 pax/day in other accommodation types. This tax must be paid by the delegate directly at the hotel.


Bed Room Active Bed Room Parc Pool Eden


Monday 18 March: Pre-Forum day: Academy course and Icebreaker
Tuesday 19 March: Forum day 1
Wednesday 20 March: Forum day 2
Thursday 21 March: Forum day 3 (Farewell dinner)
Friday 22 March: Optional excursion (destination to be confirmed)

The EAZA Animal Welfare Forum 2024 programme (V5) is now available in the Whova Conference app

If you are not able to access the app, please contact mirko.marseille@eaza.net

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Post-conference excursion

Optional post-conference excursion for AWF24 delegates: Day-visit to Venice.

Click here to view the flyer

Itinerary Friday 22 March:

  • 08:00 Pick-up by bus at the venue hotel Paradiso - Peschiera del Garda
  • 11:00 Estimated time of arrival at the bus/boat terminal near Venice. Private boat towards the centre of Venice, just 100 meters from St. Marks square. (30 minutes boat ride). While in Venice, a guided walking tour from St Mark's square with a guide and headphones is offered to see the city’s most famous landmarks, such as St. Mark's Basilica, the Bridge of Sighs, and the bell tower. The tour will take you to the main streets, the Rialto Bridge and other monuments of Venice. After the tour a delicious Italian lunch in a local restaurant just a few steps from St Marks square is included.
  • 15:00 Returning by boat to the coach.
  • 17:00-17:30 Return at hotel Paradiso

The cost p.p. for the daytrip to Venice is €115*, this includes the excursion (bus transport, private boat trip and guiding) as well as a three-course lunch (Vegetarian, fish or meat).  The excursion without the lunch costs €78. 

*price based at a minimum of 50 persons

if you're interested in joining please indicate this in the registration form and you will be contacted afterwards.


EAZA Academy course (FULL)

Trailblazing Trainers pre-forum workshop (FULL)

Registration for this Academy course is no longer possible

The Animal Training Working Group and the EAZA Academy will once again be offering a workshop before the conference on 18 March at Parco Natura Viva (Transport from the conference hotel to the zoo is provided, back and forth). This introductory workshop, tutored by Annette Pedersen, Jim Mackie & Barbara Heidenreich, is a great opportunity for participants to get a taste of the techniques and applications of force free animal training. The day will include some lecture sessions and also practical demonstrations and hands-on sessions.

Workshop fees

EAZA member: €165
Non-EAZA member: €210


08:30 –08:45 Welcome and Introduction Annette Pedersen, Jim Mackie & Barbara Heidenreich
08:45-09:45 Foundation Behaviours and Setup Before Training
09:45-10:00 BREAK
10:00-11:00 Training a New Behavior – Practical Application
11:00-11:15 BREAK
11:15-12:15 Planning a training programme
12:15-13:00 LUNCH
13:00-15:00 Animal training demos & participants hands-on activities
15:00- 15:30 Certificates from EAZA Academy and wrap up