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Speakers

Audubon Miami Valley meets the second Monday of March, April, and May in 2017 in the 2nd floor conference room of the Lebanon Citizens National Bank building at 30 West Park Place. These meetings are free and open to the public.

MAR 13- How Eastern Bluebirds Can Change Your life!, Kent Hall, Professor Emeritus (Zoology), University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point

 

kent-hall-2Dr. Hall will talk to the chapter about his life-long encounter with the eastern bluebird. It all started in a village in Missouri where he was born and raised: Versailles, which is in south central Missouri. He grew up surrounded by and immersed in the natural environment near his home. One of the most intriguing birds he encountered growing up was the eastern bluebird, the state bird of Missouri.

“I spent 30 years as a professor of Zoology. After I retired I looked around for hobbies that might interest me. For me, payback time had arrived. I remembered my childhood experiences with bluebirds and their influence on my professional career and decided to return the favor. For the last 13 years, I have coordinated the Aldo Leopold Audubon Society Bluebird Trail. It started modestly and has grown into the largest bluebird trail in North America. When started, we had only 89 boxes which produced 188 bluebirds in Portage County and I was the only monitor. In 2014 we had 1,354 boxes and produced 4,953 bluebirds in 6 counties with 76 monitors. In 13 years we’ve produced 45,500 bluebirds, plus another 14,000 songbirds, from our boxes. To put our growth into perspective, we have averaged 5,300 bluebirds produced over the past six years. During that time, we have produced more bluebirds from artificial nest boxes than all but three states in the U.S.: Wisconsin, Nebraska and Minnesota.”

 

 

APR10- Big Cat Conservation:  Human/Wildlife Conflict in Namibia, Africa, Beth Davis, Teacher, Kramer Elementary School, Oxford. OH

 

beth-davis-in-the-fieldI cannot wait to share my experiences of traveling to Africa as a recipient of an Audubon Miami Valley Rosie Bloom Scholarship. This allowed me to be a participant in the Namibia: Great Cat Conservation course under the auspices of Earth Expeditions and Miami University’s Project Dragonfly. I will be speaking about cattle overgrazing which has caused bush encroachment. This has forced farmers to seek out more and more grassland putting them in direct contact with wildlife. You will learn about the Cheetah Conservation Fund that continues to work with cheetahs to hopefully re-introduce them back into the wild. It would really be helpful if those attending my talk would view a NatGeo Wild Documentary – “Vanishing Kings: Desert Lions of Namib.”  Here is the YouTube link (the video is just under 50 minutes):

Beth teaches fifth-grade science and language arts. After many years as a secretary, stay-at-home mom, professional clown, bank teller, and elementary school librarian, Beth received a Bachelor of Arts in Middle Childhood Education from Miami University. She is currently involved in Miami’s Earth Expeditions/Project Dragonfly Program and is working toward a Master of Arts in Teaching Biological Sciences degree. Earth Expeditions has afforded Beth the opportunity to travel to Mexico’s Baja Peninsula to study desert ecology and marine biology and to Borneo to study primate conservation. Whether standing face-to-face with a curious orangutan or a curious fifth-grader Beth is always prepared to draw from her varied experiences to teach and tell others about nature and science.

 

 

APR 18- A Spring Warbler Refresher, Dave Russell, Department of Biology, Miami University

 

dave-russellJoin Dr. David Russell for an evening of entertainment as he regales us about neo-tropical migrants with pointers and clues on how to best identify the wood warblers, harbingers of spring, that pass through our region every spring. This program will take place at the Ronald Reagan Lodge, Lakeview Room, Voice of America facility, 7850 VOA Park Drive, Westchester, Ohio. 7:00 – 9:00 PM)

 

Dave teaches ornithology at Miami University and established the Hueston Woods State Park bird banding station that draws hundreds of visitors throughout the year. Dave is an unrecovered addict who gets his fix every time he sees a new life bird. Dave is known to go to extremes to see any new bird that occurs within a 1000 miles of southwest Ohio and even beyond. In 2016 he has seen 517 species in North America as of October 31 with hopes of reaching 600 by the end of the year.

 

MAY 8- Madagascar – The Eighth Continent – Why It Matters, Hardy Eshbaugh, Professor Emeritus (Botany), Miami University, Oxford
hardy-eshbaugh-cIn September 2016 an intrepid group of nature lovers journeyed to Madagascar on an Earlham College alumni trip to learn about the “eighth” continent first hand. Madagascar is unique amongst the earth’s many destinations in its high number of endemic species across various groups of organisms such as birds, frogs, primates, insects, plants, etc. Madagascar faces a number of challenges ranging from an exploding population, massive deforestation, and unsustainable development to mention a few that threaten the very survival of its unique evolutionary heritage. Come and learn what makes Madagascar a show place of evolution and what is being done to save this incredible place for future generations.

 

Hardy Eshbaugh was a Miami University professor for more than 31 years and continued to teach and direct graduate students long after he retired until 2012. In retirement he focused on serving on various boards of not-for-profit organizations including the National Audubon Society, The Atlantic Salmon Federation, and the Catesby Commemorative Trust. Professionally, he served as the president of the American Institute of Biological Sciences, the Botanical Society of America, the Society for Economic Botany, and the American Society of Plant Taxonomy. His botanical expertise is on Capsicum (chili peppers) and the flora of the Bahamas and the Maritime provinces.

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