by A. Greene
Now in its 41st year, the Audubon Society will be holding the annual Institute of Desert Ecology program. Beginning Apr. 28 and continuing through May 1, the four day program studies Sonoran Desert ecosystems, specifically the relationships between plants, animals and physical characteristics of the desert.
“This is a chance to learn about North America’s most interesting biogeographical region from experts who have decades of teaching and research experience in it,” said Institute Director Matt Brooks. Faculty includes renowned authorities, such as Cecil Schwalbe, who co-wrote the book, The Venomous Reptiles of Arizona and Linwoood Smith, an expert on desert adaptations, who has taught participants botany and ornithology for 40 years. The veteran faculty presents to participants in small groups and focuses on Sonoran Desert connections and interactions, illustrating through activities from nature walks and lizard-lassoing in the daytime to black lighting for arthropods, owling and star presentations at night.
The Institute is open to anyone, but is limited to 60 people per year. Participants will camp all four days at Catalina State Park. All meals are catered and included in the tuition, which is $425 for Audubon members, and $460 for non-members.
For more information or to register, visit the Tucson Audubon Society website, or call Matt Brooks at 629-0510 x7007.