The Preserve is hosting a guest lecturer 7 pm to 8 pm every Thursday night from Sept. 28 through Nov. 16. Using easy-to-use Zoom webinars, these virtual lectures feature an impressive list of experts from across the country. Can't make it to your favorite lecture? All registrants receive a recording of their purchased class for later viewing.
Thursday Night Nature – Autumn 2023
Admission: $15 per lecture (members $12 with discount code)
OR Bundle Admission:
$90 ($72 for members) for discounted class bundle - this option is only available before the start of the series.
So kick back, relax and join the Preserve from the comfort of your couch and turn your screen green with Thursday Night Nature.
Birds do it, bees do it and sentimental fleas? Don’t even ask. In a fun yet science-filled, illustrated, PG-13 lecture, Mike Weilbacher presents the extraordinary life stories and adaptations of animals for sex and reproduction. From giraffes “necking” to male anglerfish hanging around literally forever, from gender-bending clownfish to overly endowed banana slugs, from honeybees to, of course, the infamous praying mantis, you’ll shake your head at the extraordinary antics of sex in the animal kingdom.
Naturalist Mike Weilbacher is executive director of the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education in Philadelphia’s Roxborough section. An award-winning environmental educator for 40 years, Weilbacher writes a weekly column for the Roxborough Review and is well known to public radio listeners as “Mike the All-Natural Science Guy” on the live children’s radio show “Kid’s Corner” on WXPN.
Learn the difference between these two approaches to incorporating native plants into the landscape, and how they perform over time. Learn about how the natural environment, and the selection of species, influence the long-term viability and ecological usefulness of native plantings.
Josh is a self-proclaimed lifelong learner, and has spent years studying ecology and invasive management. He has worked with everything from Porceline Berry to Lantern Fly management in an effort to make way for healthier ecosystems. Josh has has a B.S. in Biology from Vassar College. He has a soft spot for riparian areas and streams, which is where you might find him collecting data (or trash) on his days off!
Oct. 12: Climate Change: The Science, The Impacts and Some Steps We Can Take to Avoid The Worst with Mike Aucott, Ph.D.
During this dive into one of the most pressing issues of our time, Mike Aucott will discuss what we currently know about climate science. He will highlight some existing and potential future impacts of elevated greenhouse gas (GHG) levels on the planet and its biota. He will also discuss ways we can reduce GHG emissions with efforts to encourage low- and zero-carbon energy production and also how we might actively discourage fossil fuel combustion.
Mike Aucott holds a Ph.D. in environmental science from Rutgers University. He retired from his position as research scientist for the NJ Department of Environmental Protection in 2012, but still works with NJDEP as a member of its science advisory board. He also does consulting work in energy issues, air pollution and climate change, and he is a board member of the PA/NJ chapter of the American Chestnut Foundation. Aucott manages an orchard of 800 chestnut trees in northern Pennsylvania and oversees a hybrid chestnut breeding program involving 15 other growers.
With the shift of horticulture from one of aesthetics and extraction to one of ecology, many gardeners wonder how to best make their existing landscapes more environmentally beneficial. Unless you are moving into a newly built home, most of us have or buy existing landscapes that are primarily non-native, and their conversion can be daunting to even the experienced gardener. This talk will discuss strategies a homeowner can use to transform their standard yard into an ecologically beneficial garden.
Carl Molter is Design Director at Indigenous Ingenuities, an ecologically based design-build firm in Doylestown, PA. He combines his over 25 years of design-build residential experience with a passion for ecology and place-making. He also is the host of WDVR’s Into the Garden radio show.
Learn how to document your outdoor explorations and make yourself a better observer by keeping your own nature journal. Join local naturalist-artist Jack Hobe for an evening talk about the basics of nature journaling (observation, questioning and connecting) as well as a live demonstration using a nature object. Hobe will discuss his background, passion for nature art and techniques he uses to look more closely at the natural world. Participants are encouraged to have with them a nature object (fruit, vegetable, flower, leaf, feather, pinecone, etc.) and paper and pencil so they can follow along as Hobe creates a journal page in real time!
Jack Hobe—artist, birder, naturalist, scientist and nature journaler-–loves all things birds and nature. He started drawing as soon as he could hold a crayon, and his interest in birds was realized soon after. That interest has since grown into a passion for birds and the natural world in general. Hobe has learned many of his techniques from the work of master wildlife illustrator and nature journaler John Muir Laws. A passionate naturalist and nature journaler, Hobe loves to notice, wonder, make connections and explore nature through the pages of a journal. He also aims to help others enjoy the natural world by teaching them to observe scientifically through their own journals.
We are taught to keep our heritage and culture alive. Lenape Nation of Pennsylvania’s Chief Barbara Bluejay Michalski, Keeper of Culture, does just that.The Lenapes have their own unique story. Lenapes were original caretakers of the land, and their story is “The Prophecy of the Fourth Crow.” It is about the Lenape Nation of Pennsylvania’s decades-long struggle to survive to keep their community and culture intact. The First Crow was the Lenape before the coming of the Europeans. The Second Crow symbolized the death and destruction of their culture. During the Third Crow, the people went “underground’” hiding their identity. The Fourth Crow was the Lenape becoming caretakers again and working with everybody to restore this land. Chief Bluejay will discuss how they have been maintaining the language and culture. TheLenape Nation of Pennsylvania has been preserving the land through the Rising Nation River Journey and the treaty of renewed friendship, and has created partnerships with over 130 organizations.
Chief Bluejay, aka Barbara Michalski, was given the name by her grandfather, Bill Thompson, late Chief Whippoorwill of the Unalachtigo (people near the ocean) Tribe of the Turkey Clan. A member of Lenape Nation of Pennsylvania, she has immersed herself in their activities, such as serving on the tribal council and as tribal secretary and participating in educating the public by attending events or festivals in the Lenapehoking (Homeland of the Lenape). Most importantly, Bluejay teaches children the history of the Lenape Nation through crafts, storytelling and artifacts. She has also been involved in environmental causes, particularly working for clean water and protecting our Earth Mother. Recently, she has seen a rising interest in medicinal plants and has been working to learn more about them.
Chief Adam Waterbear DePaul, tribal storykeeper and director of education for the Lenape Nation of Pennsylvania, will briefly discuss the past and present of the Lenape people in Pennsylvania. He will then share cultural stories of the Lenape People that address creation, conservation and pillars of Lenape culture. A theme of these stories will be horticulture and environment, and Chief Adam will also discuss food justice and health in relation to indigenous and introduced foods. Questions and discussion from the audience will be encouraged.
Adam Waterbear DePaul is a council member for the Lenape Nation of Pennsylvania, where his roles include storykeeper, academic liaison and coordinator of the Rising Nation River Journey. He is an instructor and Ph.D. candidate in cultural and mythological studies at Temple University, where he co-curated Everyday Artistry, Enduring Presence in 2019.
TerraCycle is a mission-driven company dedicated to the elimination of the idea of waste through the creation of innovative solutions for the recycling of traditionally non-recycled materials. TerraCycle, based in Trenton, NJ, operates in over 20 countries worldwide and has a foundation in Thailand that undertakes the cleanup of river plastics. TerraCycle has been recognized by the United Nations for its work towards cleaning up and repurposing ocean plastics, and Time Magazine includes TerraCycle on its list of the world’s 100 Most Influential Companies. TerraCycle offers opportunities for schools, communities and NGOs to fundraise just by recycling non-curbside recycled products and packaging. These unique programs have collectively raised over $45,000,000 for participating schools and nonprofits.
Kariina Rand is TerraCycle’s North America manager of community relations and strategic partnerships., Rand works to empower communities and organizations with opportunities to recycle hard-to-recycle items using TerraCycle’s free programs. Outside of work, she enjoys time spent outside, including gardening, hiking, camping and exploring new places around the world. She happily calls the Sourlands, just across the river from the Preserve, her home, where she lives with her husband and their daughter.