Bay Area Naturalist Events Calendar

A compendium of bird walks, fungus forays, work parties, wildflower hikes, beach cleanups, exhibit openings, garden tours, wildlife festivals, star parties, ecology classes, science symposia, employment opportunities, and natural history lectures. Compiled by Patrick Schlemmer. If you have an event to list on the calendar, please submit it to jkodiak@earthlink.net. It is always good to confirm locations and times before heading out, as these sometimes change. This calendar is updated every day, so check back often!

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Sat., May 24 The Zoo welcomes our new special exhibition, Washed Ashore, which will open in the Pachyderm Building for Memorial Day Weekend on May 24. Washed Ashore is a project of The Artula Institute for Arts & Environmental Education, whose mission is to provide opportunities to express and teach environmental issues through the arts. Through spectacular, giant sea life sculptures made with debris that has "washed ashore," this project creates awareness about marine debris and plastic pollution and gives new meaning to the common plastic items we throw in the garbage every day.


Sat., May 31 This month our regular drop-in volunteer day coincides with our annual Ring Mountain Thistle Pull! We'll work together to ward off invasive tocolote, a feisty, nonnative plant that was once widespread, but is on the decline due to this annual event. Our efforts help protect many unique, native species, including the endangered Tiburon mariposa lily, a beautiful flower found only on Ring Mountain. We will also have the opportunity to listen to interpretive talks, and find out what's in store for the future of this incredible preserve. Become a part of this habitat restoration success story! This is a moderately strenuous activity and is suitable for volunteers of all ages. Dress in layers, wear sturdy shoes, and bring water. 9 am-1 pm. Questions: contact Ring Mountain Stewardship Coordinator Sam Abercrombie at (415) 473-2128 or SAbercrombie@marincounty.org.


Sat., May 31 Fossils and Flumes. Environmental Education Center, Alviso. 11 am-12:30 pm. Fossils and flumes are used to teach children about the South Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project. Park Ranger Jose Garcia brings fossils from Triassic wetlands he collected in eastern Montana to show the similarities to today's wetlands, and to explain their function in nature. Interactive flumes allow for a hands-on experience of how wetlands protect the surrounding area from flooding. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Call (510) 792-0222 ext. 141 for reservations.


Sat., May 31 Bay to Sea Symposium. Aquarium of the Bay, San Francisco, 10 am.


Sat., May 31 National Animal Rights Day. San Francisco Civic Center Plaza, 11 am-3 pm. For more information, go to www.thenard.org. Free.


Sat., May 31 SkeptiCal 2014, Oakland.


Sat., May 31 When Worlds Collide. Planet Earth is constantly being struck by interplanetary debris, from fine dust to rocks or boulders big enough to outshine the Sun when they die, to asteroids or comets or even small stray planets. Mountain Theater, Mill Valley, 8:30 pm.


Sat., May 31 World Parrot Day.


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Tues., June 3 Large Carnivores in N. Kenya with Shivani Bhalla, Founder of Ewaso Lions. Shivani Bhalla is a fourth generation Kenyan who believes the key to lion conservation is working in partnership with local communities to deliver real solutions and ensure the long-term sustainability of not only northern Kenya's lions but its other large carnivores as well. In 2007, she founded Ewaso Lions, a Kenya based conservation organization that uses scientific research and community-based outreach programs to promote coexistence between lions and people. Tusher African Hall, 7 pm. Full details and tickets


Wed., June 4 Aquapalooza: Party Like a Pirate. Aquarium of the Bay, San Francisco, 7 pm.


Wed, June 4 Cucurbits of California, with Kipp McMichael. Everyone is welcome to attend Native Plant Society membership meetings in the Recreation Room of the San Francisco County Fair Building (SFCFB) at 9th Avenue and Lincoln Way in Golden Gate Park. 7:30 pm Free.


June 6-8 The Lives of Birds: Yosemite Valley (3-day class) with David Lukas. For more information, go to www.yosemiteconservancy.org/outdoor-adventures/lives-birds-yosemite-valley.


Sun., June 8 World Oceans Day.


Sun., June 8 Tree Tour of Lands End with Naomi LeBeau.


Mon., June 9 Science & Scripture: Inside the Vatican Observatory. Father George Coyne, former Director of the Vatican Observatory, in conversation with Ryan Wyatt. Nourse Theater, 7:30 pm. For tickets, call (415) 392-4400 or visit the City Box Office.


Thurs., June 12 The Borneo Project. Brihannala Morgan speak about the wonder of the island of Borneo -- its wildlife, its lands and its people. In addition to the history of the Project itself, Brihannala will also discuss the unique model of the Borneo Project and what the Project does to support rainforest communities on-the-ground in Borneo in their fight against encroaching development and mega-dams. Randall Museum, 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA 94114. 7:30-9 pm. For more information, go to www.sfns.org or contact Patrick Schlemmer at jkodiak@earthlink.net or (415) 225-3830. Free and open to everyone.


June 12-15 Sierra Nevada Wildflower Identification Made Fun with instructors Karen Wiese and Carl Wishner. Are you interested in learning to identify wildflowers using photographs, flower color, and simple plant features? In this field-oriented workshop, you will learn to use the book Sierra Nevada Wildflowers, and several other excellent field guides, to identify a broad range of wildflowers with confidence. Based out of the UC Sagehen Creek Field Station, north of Truckee, California, the workshop will include an interactive overview of basic botanical vocabulary, two and one-half days in the field visiting meadow, forest, and riparian plant communities, and two evening programs. To sharpen your plant identification skills, there will be opportunities to use dissecting scopes with live plant material and, should you desire, to learn how to key plants using the second edition of  The Jepson Manual. This workshop's content will be tailored to the beginning field botanist. We welcome more experienced participants as well! Workshop fee: ($485 for members of the Friends of the Jepson Herbarium, $525 for the general public) includes lodging, meals from dinner on Thursday through lunch on Sunday, and some transportation to field sites. Most participants will be accommodated in twin or bunk-style beds in shared rooms. Flush toilets and showers are available in an adjacent bath house. Space is also available for camping. Registration information available at http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/workshops/2014/regform_2014.html or call the Jepson Herbarium: (510) 643-7008.


Fri., June 13 International Pigeon Day.


Sun., June 15 20th Annual San Francisco Butterfly Count. 9 am-5 pm. An intense, one-day inventory of all the butterfly species / individuals flying in our county. We will begin at the Randall Museum (199 Museum Way) before heading out with assigned groups. Each group will have a copy of  Nature in the City's Butterflies of San Francisco Field Guide to make it easier on the novice. Bring your lunch. It's really a magnificent day, folks to help with field work. A $3 participation fee is collected by all that attend that ultimately goes towards butterfly conservation. We tied our record last year with 26 species and over 900 individuals  and recorded the All Time National High in 2011 of Papilio zelicaon -- 110 Anise Swallowtails seen here in one day! For more information, contact Liam O'Brien at liammail56@yahoo.com. The count is sponsored by The North American Butterfly Association and Nature in the City this year. We all meet up at Pasquale's Pizzeria (700 Irving St. in the Inner Sunset / corner of 8th & Irving ) for the compilation @5:15. This year we'll add a cake...cuz it's our 20th anniversary, folks! Mark the date!


Wed., June 18 Day of the Condor.


Sun., June 22 Fire Fest Fundraiser . Mission Blue Center, 475 Mission Blue Drive, Brisbane, 4-8 pm. Celebrate the Solstice with a party commemorating the San Bruno Mountain fire of 2008. This event will feature: Music by the Elderberries, short films about San Bruno Mountain, and delicious finger food. $20.


June 22-27 Natural History of the Lakes Basin (5-day class) with David Lukas at the SFSU Sierra Nevada Field Campus. For more information, go to www.sfsu.edu/~sierra/Courses.html.


Tues., June 24 The Southern Ocean, with Buff and Gerald Corsi. Potluck slide show at the County Fair Building, GG Park, 7 pm. For more information, contact Ted Kipping at tkippingsprint@earthlink.net. Please bring your own plates and service and a dish and beverage to serve eight people.


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July 4-6 Writing and the Naturalist's Mind (3-day class) with David Lukas. Sierra Nevada Field Campus. For more information, go to www.sfsu.edu/~sierra/Courses.html.


July 6-11 Natural History and the Naturalist's Mind (5-day class) with David Lukas. Sierra Nevada Field Campus. For more information, go to www.sfsu.edu/~sierra/Courses.html


Thurs., July 10 The Wilds of San Francisco and You. The San Francisco Naturalist Society welcomes Brent Plater, executive director of the Wild Equity Institute, for a photographic exploration of the remaining wild areas in San Francisco. San Francisco has 32 pockets of undeveloped land set aside for the preservation of the natural world. These pockets hold the last remnants of wildness once found across the lands where we now live, but do we have room in our parks and our hearts for nature in this city? Please join us to discuss the threats these natural areas face and learn how you can help these areas thrive. Randall Museum, 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA (map), 7:30 pm. Free.


Wed., July 16 World Snake Day.


July 18-20 Sierra Nevada Natural History. Three day Yosemite Conservancy class with David Lukas. For more information, go to


Sat., July 19 MBARI annual open house. We at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) invite you to our annual open house! Our staff, scientists, and engineers will share their knowledge and enthusiasm about oceanographic research at this special event. Highlights include science exhibits, technology demonstrations, deep-sea videos, presentations about our research, robotic submarines, children's activities, and ocean career information. This free event is fun for the whole family! MBARI - 7700 Sandholdt Road, Moss Landing, Ca 95039, noon-5 pm. For more information, go to www.mbari.org.


Tues., July 22 Al Life Devoted to Beauty, with Jack Halpern and Ted Kipping. Potluck slide show at the County Fair Building, GG Park, 7 pm. For more information, contact Ted Kipping at tkippingsprint@earthlink.net. Please bring your own plates and service and a dish and beverage to serve eight people.

July 26-Aug. 5 Ants of the Southwest. This workshop is designed for students, biologists, and other individuals who have some background in biology at the college level. This course is designed with curriculum that complements rather than competes with the California Academy of Sciences Ant Course. Although we will cover basic taxonomy and systematics, the major focus of this course will be on the ecology and behavior of ants. For the full announcement click here http://research.amnh.org/swrs/ants-southwest.


Tues., July 29 Global Tiger Day.


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Tues., Aug. 26 Symphonies in Chartreuse, with Ted Kipping. Potluck slide show. County Fair Building, GG Park, 7 pm. For more information, contact Ted Kipping at tkippingsprint@earthlink.net. Please bring your own plates and service and a dish and beverage to serve eight people.


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