Past Events

Monday, June 22, 2020

a Zoom window of a smiling naturalist pasted over a photo of an oak

Learn with a Naturalist: Video Showcase Exploration

2:00pm to 3:00pm

You're invited to see through the eyes of our SSU Naturalists. Come enjoy short selected video clips filmed during the shelter-in-place on topics ranging from investigations of local plant species, becoming present in nature, and how to explore the environment right outside your window. Education Manager, Suzanne DeCoursey, will be our guide through this video showcase, introducing each clip and answering your questions, and will be joined by some of the filmmakers themselves. Watch recorded event here: Learn with a Naturalist: Video Showcase Exploration June 22, 2020

Friday, June 12, 2020

a woman holds a notebook and colored pens in front of a valley

Learn with a Naturalist: The Value of Field Sketching

12:00pm to 1:00pm

Join Oregon naturalist, educator, and biological illustrator, Christine Elder, to learn how to incorporate nature sketching into your field studies. She will chat about the benefits of a nature journaling practice, then she'll lead you through some fun sketching exercises to get you familiar with techniques you can use for yourself and your students. Watch recorded event here: Learn with a Naturalist: The Value of Field Sketching June 12, 2020

Thursday, June 4, 2020

Landscape view of grassland with mountains and power lines in distance

Deep Dive: Sonoma Mountain Geologic & Climatic Evolution

2:00pm to 3:00pm

How did Sonoma Mountain and the surrounding terrain form? SSU Geology Instructor Nicole Myers will lead you on a virtual geologic exploration of the formation of Sonoma County over the last ~140 million years. Learn how tectonic, seismic, and volcanic events formed the rocks, valleys, and mountains around us. This presentation is intended for geo-beginners and self-proclaimed-geology-nerds alike and will serve as an introduction to the local geologic processes & climatic trends that comprise the natural forces that form our home land, including wildfires, floods, and earthquakes. Watch recorded event here: Deep Dive: Sonoma Mountain Geologic & Climatic Evolution June 4, 2020

Friday, May 29, 2020

A smiling man holds a California kingsnake under a white oak tree

Learn with a Naturalist: Storytelling in Nature

2:00pm to 3:00pm

Storytelling is perhaps the essence of human communication. It’s how we can breath life and meaning into environmental facts and information. During this hour I will share some nature based stories, explore how to be a more effective storyteller, and possibly guide us to jointly make a new story. Watch recorded event here: Learn With a Naturalist: Storytelling in Nature

Friday, May 22, 2020

close up view of coyote brush draped in a spider web

Local Nature: Backyard Photography

10:00am to 11:30am

Learn about the magical variety of photography opportunities right in your backyard using your cellphone or digital camera. You will have an opportunity to develop an eye for close-up and creative shots, turning even ordinary natural items into photos to enjoy. Rick will show you basic photography techniques to help you capture the changing light and seasons in your neighborhood. Then there will be 20 minutes for you to take outdoor photos, followed by sharing photos and answering questions. Watch recorded event here: Local Nature: Backyard Photography May 22, 2020

Saturday, May 16, 2020

camera view of a mountain lion stepping over a worn tree root

Citizen Science: Backyard Wildlife Cameras

9:00am to 10:00am

Wildlife cameras have been widely used by ecology researchers, students, landowners, hunters, and wildlife enthusiasts over the past 30 years. Come learn about the different wildlife camera models and how to decide which model is right for you. You will learn how to set-up a wildlife camera in your back yard and how to identify wildlife in camera trap photos. Our goal is to get you excited to discover the wildlife in your back yard. Keep reading for helpful videos and documents, and watch recorded event here: Citizen Science: Backyard Wildlife Cameras May 16, 2020

Watch Camera trap set-up video here: Backyard Camera Set-up

Friday, May 15, 2020

screenshot of the Aqua Bugs app with a mayfly larva photo

Citizen Science: Aqua Bugs, Invertebrates & Water Quality

2:00pm to 3:00pm

Aquatic insects and other invertebrates are an integral part of any aquatic system, and they can also be used as an indicator of water quality. We’ll talk about some of the macro invertebrates that can be found in our lakes and streams, and learn how to use the Aqua Bugs phone app to identify them. Watch recorded event here: Citizen Science: Aqua Bugs, Invertebrates & Water Quality May 15, 2020

Monday, May 11, 2020

a golden crowned sparrow on a branch

Deep Dive: Waves, Sound & Bird Sampling

11:00am to 12:00pm

How does an understanding of waves and sound help citizens and scientists to understand the natural world (and particularly birds)? Which birds can we observe with sound? How can you train your ear to notice the birds around you? Learn how to apply this fascinating area of research in your own life to increase your enjoyment of your local birds! Watch recorded event here: Deep Dive: Waves, Sound & Bird Sampling May 11, 2020

Friday, May 8, 2020

a naturalist poses next to a soap plant in bloom

Citizen Science: Exploring California's Plants Using Calflora

2:00pm to 3:00pm

Calflora is a website used to help anyone (from land managers to expert botanists and average Joes alike) learn more about California's wild flora. This event will cover the many features of the Calflora website and will also touch on the Calflora Observer Pro smartphone app. Equipped with this knowledge, participants will put their new skills to the test as they go out to their backyards and local natural areas in their neighborhoods to identify and/or make observations of plants for the Calflora database. Watch recorded event here: Citizen Science: Exploring California's Plants Using Calflora May 8, 2020

Thursday, May 7, 2020

a variety of homemade bee houses in a pile

Learn with a Naturalist: Create Shelter for Wildlife During Shelter-in-Place

3:00pm to 4:00pm

Would you like to turn your property into a sanctuary for salamanders, bats, butterflies, lizards, native bees and songbirds? We'll talk about basic principles of providing backyard habitat and the specifics of how to attract wildlife in the Bay Area. Our interactive program will include several DIY projects, including how to create salamander and lizard refugia, nesting for native bees and a quick-and-dirty bird feeder, all with materials you already have at home. Watch recorded event here: Learn With a Naturalist: Create Shelter for Wildlife During Shelter-in-Place May 7, 2020

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