Throughout February, the Shawangunk Ridge Biodiversity Parternship will hold four free lectures titled, "Secrets of the Shawgunks-Predation and Migration." The annual series is held in SUNY New Paltz's Lecture Center 102 and cosponsored by the university's Biology Department.
On February 7 from 7 to 9pm, SRBP screens the award-winning documentary Lords of Nature, which explores how the recovery of predators is key to restoring and maintaining ecosystems. Keynote speaker Dr. John Laundre, biology instructor at SUNY Oswego and vice president of the Cougar Rewilding Foundation, will discuss how predator recovery in western ecosystems could provide a solution to the collapsing eastern forests.
Thomas Sarro, biology professor at Mount Saint Mary College and Mohonk Research Associate, leads the lecture "Raptor Migration in the Shawangunks" on Thursday, February 14, at 8:30pm. The 20-year veteran teaches which raptors are commonly seen during fall migration, offers tips for identifying soaring raptors, and shares old and new regional observations.
On Thursday, February 21, from 7 to 8:30pm, "The Catskills/Shawangunk Connection" lecture is led by Cara Lee, Mark King, Rebecca Shirer, and Laura Heady from the Nature Conservancy and the Hudson River Estuary Program/Cornell University. The group of conservationists talk about how local ecological organizations are working together to promote connectivity between landscapes.
"Eel Migration in the Hudson Valley" reveals that the tiny "glass eel" population in the Hudson River is declining and causing a ripple effect on the habitat. On Thursday, February 28, from 7 to 8:30pm, Chris Bowser—education coordinator for the Hudson River National Estuarine Research Reserve—leads the lecture and reveals the efforts being made by citizens to study the animal's populations and migration patterns.
The lecture series—held in SUNY New Paltz's Lecture Center 102—is free and open to the public.