A WALK IN
Seeking Herps in Nature
One highlight of the day will be
a leisurely, personally-guided, 3/4-mile nature walk around a
well-planned circuit that introduces you to the Florida landscape
and (hopefully) some of its wild residents. The route has
been carefully chosen to weave you through changing habitats of
shaded palmetto 'jungle', live oak and cabbage palm woods, and
finally over an increasingly rare piece of Florida dry scrub.
Bill will point out, identify
and describe the fascinating natural history of many local
plants and animals. Many kinds of wild mammals,
birds, herps, and invertebrates call the habitat we'll traverse home.
Besides the chance of
encountering local animals on the move, Bill has placed numerous
of AC (= artificial cover) 'sets' for herps that
will demonstrate the vast array of materials and strategies that
attract them to manmade shelters. Checking them during the
walk will be a great lesson on what kinds of places herps like
to hide and how to create them. Also included will be a look
at how researchers use drift fence sampling techniques to trap hard-to-observe wildlife.
Any specimens found will be
available for a handling session and impromptu photography
'lesson' in the field. All herps will be released
afterward at the exact spot they were found.