You can become a Catalina Island Insider with the Conservancy's Naturalist Training.

The Naturalist Training Program is built upon the vision of Catalina as a premier ecotourism destination where the needs of the human community blend with the needs of the ecological community. The program is part of a major Education Department initiative by the Catalina Island Conservancy to enrich the visitor and resident experience by ensuring that stewards have access to accurate and compelling information that highlights the ecology of the Island and the work of the Conservancy.

The Naturalist Training 3-Part Series Includes:

The Conservancy’s classic Naturalist Training now exists online as a two-part video course and a follow up discussion with a Conservancy naturalist.


  1. Register for the course by selecting a date and time from below to attend a Zoom webinar. Be sure to select a date that will allow you time to view the videos beforehand.
  2. After registration through Zoom, you will receive a confirmation e-mail containing links to: The two Naturalist 1 Videos, Video Follow-along Guide, and Catalina Endemic Species Guide. Download the Naturalist Guide below!
  3. Watch the two videos
     • Video 1 is 34 minutes and covers an Introduction to Island Ecology, Catalina Geology, Island Species, Catalina’s First People, and Exploration and Early ownership of the Island. This video sets the stage for Video 2.
    • Video 2 is 22 minutes and covers the restoration, recovery and management of Catalina since the formation of the Catalina Conservancy in 1972.
  4. Complete the follow along guide while watching the videos. Make notes of questions you want to ask during the webinar.
  5. Attend the Zoom webinar. The webinars are approximately one hour and are comprised of other course participants. Education staff will lead you through the Concept Check of the Follow-along Guide, provide updates on the Island and Conservancy programs and land management, and answer any questions you have.
  6. Receive your Naturalist 1 Certificate and Follow-along Guide Concept Check after attending your scheduled Zoom webinar.
  7. Complete the Evaluation that you will receive as a link after the course.

Registration for Naturalist 2 Training will soon be open for the following dates:
August 11
September 8 

Second Wednesday of the Month (Unless otherwise noted) 

9:30am - 3:30pm
Trailhead Visitor Center
$55 Registration 

An all-day excursion into the wildlands of Catalina that expands on the Level 1 training.  Participants can expect to learn up-to-date information and facts about the natural history of Catalina Island, including information about geology, plant communities, biogeography and more while traveling to some of Catalina's unique and historic sites.

Participation in this course gives you the tools to look at the landscape of Catalina Island through the eyes of a Naturalist.  As a Certified Island Naturalist you are an ambassador of stewardship for this Island. 


Catalina California Naturalist Program

Naturalist 3 Training, known as the Catalina California Naturalist Training, is a partnership with the University of California-Agriculture and Natural Resources-Cooperative Extension Naturalist Training Program. This course breaks down and delves deeper into the topics covered in Naturalist 1& 2 Trainings, while grounding Catalina natural history inside a 40-hour, 4-unit community college level course. Conservancy Instructors coordinate the course, but step aside for Catalina guest experts to instruct in their areas of expertise.

UCANR California Naturalist Program
The UC California Naturalist Program (CalNat) seeks to foster a committed corps of naturalists and community scientists trained and ready to take an active role in natural resource conservation, education, and restoration. The UC California Naturalist course will introduce you to the wonders of local ecology and engage you in the stewardship of California’s natural communities. The course will combine a science curriculum with guest lecturers, field trips and project-based learning to immerse you in the natural world.

For more information on the UCANR California Naturalist Program, CLICK HERE.

Catalina California Naturalist
Catalina Island Conservancy acknowledges that Catalina Island is the ancestral land of the Pimu Tongva and seeks to amplify the voices and knowledge of tribal community partners. The Catalina California Naturalist Course looks to facilitate naturalists continuing education and discovery of southern California’s rare, coastal Mediterranean ecosystems. This course highlights these ecosystems through the lens of island biogeography and explores the familiar yet uniquely adapted world of the Channel Islands. By the end of the course participants will have a toolbox to connect them to THE NATURE, to communicate about it to others, and to take action to care for it.

2021 Course Schedule: 10-week ONLINE coursework from 3/11/21 - 5/13/21

Cost: $240

For more information, contact:
Hillary Holt
310-510-0954 x 226

Back Issues

Issue #1 / All About Bison

Issue #2 / All About Birds
Issue #3 / All About Plants
Issue #4 / All About Eagles
Issue #5 / All About Ravens & Crows
Issue #6 / All About Natives & Invasives   
Issue #7 / All About Rain
Issue #8 / All About Bison Roundup
Issue #9 / All About Foxes
Issue #10 / All About Weeds
Issue #11 / All About Eagle Hatchlings
Issue #12 / All About Snakes
Issue #13 / All About Diurnal Raptors 
Issue #14 / All About Diurnal Raptors II
Issue #15 / All About Giants & Dwarves 
Issue #16 / All About Fire Ecology
Issue #17 / All About Mule Deer
Issue #18 / All About Feral Cats
Issue #19 / All About Acorn Woodpeckers
Issue #20 / All About Tachi the Fox
Issue #21 / All About Observing Nature
Issue #22 / All About Bald Eagle Update
Issue #23 / All About Invasive Plants
Issue #24 / All About Poisonous Plants
Issue #25 / All About the Value of Nature
Issue #26 / All About Edible Invasives
Issue #27 / All About Plants in Summer
Issue #28 / All About Marine Ecosystems
Issue #29 / All About Dominant Rocks
Issue #30 / All About Catalina’s Tongva
Issue #31 / All About Wildlife Fast Facts
Issue #32 / All About Wrigley Memorial
Issue #33 / All About Endemic Species
Issue #34 / All About Conservancy Volunteers
Issue #35 / All About Catalina’s Wildflowers

Issue #36 / All About Catalina’s Migratory Birds
Issue #37 / All About Reptiles & Amphibians
Issue #38 / All About Catalina's Spiders
Issue #39 / All About Nature Ethic
ssue #40 / Going Batty
Issue #44 / Island Invasives
Issue #45 / 2015 CIC Symposium 
Issue #46 / Wildflowers


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