Thursday, January 22, 2015

54th Annual West Virginia Wildflower Pilgrimage

Please join us in celebrating the "FIFTY-FOURTH WEST VIRGINIA WILDFLOWER PILGRIMAGE", May 7-10, 2015, at beautiful Blackwater Falls State Park, in Davis, West Virginia.  This event is attended annually by approximately 300 people. Professional and amateur botanists as well as bird watchers are among those in attendance from some 16 states. Speakers, fascinating programs, and exhibits will be featured each evening.  To help identify plants and birds, point out interesting flora and fauna, and answer questions, specialists will be on hand from West Virginia University; West  Virginia Division of Natural Resources; West Virginia Garden Club, Inc.; Brooks Bird Club and various colleges.

For more information and a link to the registration form check the News and Notes section of the Master Naturalist website.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Training available for volunteer stream monitors

West Virginia Rivers Coalition partnered with Trout Unlimited and its West Virginia and Virginia Councils to implement a volunteer stream monitoring program.  The program, developed by Trout Unlimited and free to participants, trains volunteers to detect and alert authorities to potential pollution events, as well as to collect baseline data in watersheds with the potential to experience shale gas development in the future.  This statewide project, initiated in 2014, is designed to protect cold water streams in the shale gas region of Central Appalachia by early identification of water quality problems and characterization of baseline watershed health.  Sensitive cold water streams that are home to unique animals such as the eastern brook trout, the only trout native to West Virginia, are prioritized for monitoring.  To date, the volunteer monitoring program has trained 107 participants in West Virginia who monitor 103 sites on 90 different streams throughout the state.  The next training for volunteers will be Jan 24, at WVU.  Call 304-637-7201 to make a reservation or learn more.  The program is funded by the Appalachian Stewardship Foundation and the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection.