Thursday, June 22, 2017

WVU Core Arboretum Work Day Wednesdays

Volunteers help keep the Arboretum beautiful, and you can be a part of the crew each Wednesday, from 4-7 pm (1-4 pm during winter)!  We will work on trails, do invasive species removal, clean drainage channels, maintain lawn areas, etc.  The program is open to all.  It is hard work, but good exercise, and it is much appreciated by the Arboretum’s many users.  Interested volunteers should  email Zach Fowler (zfowler@mail.wvu.edu) to schedule a time slot, and WVU students and faculty should register on iServe.  There is a limit on the number of volunteers that we can accommodate each day, but the program will be ongoing.  Volunteers will meet near the Arboretum parking lot.  Volunteers should wear closed toe shoes, long pants, and clothes that are okay to get dirty.  The event will be cancelled if the weather is dangerous.

DNR warns against river otters after two were bitten

Two people were recently bitten by a river otter while boating on Dunkard Creek in Monongalia County, near Mason-Dixon Historical Park.  The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (WVDNR) reminds the public to exercise caution around these aquatic mammals.
River otters have large home ranges in and along many of the streams and rivers in the state.  Otters are territorial and may aggressively protect their young, so people should be extra careful not to disrupt their habitat.
"Do not approach river otters," Steve Raouch, District 1 wildlife biologist, said.  "If an otter approaches, you should take steps to keep the otter away from you.  This can be done with boat oars, fishing rod, or whatever else might be readily available.  You should never try to touch a river otter or any other wild animal."
(Dominion Post 6/20/2017)

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Arboretum hosts first lecture of season

Local and regional experts will speak at the WVU Core Arboretum this summer as part of its new Nature Connection Series.
The talks will be at 6pm every Tuesday through August, at the Arboretum Amphitheater.  Talks are free and open to the public.  Some may include walking or fieldwork.
The series began this week, with Megan Kruger, environmental education associate at the West Virginia Water Research Institute.  Her lecture was, "Investigating nature's calendar: A pathway to citizen science."
The month's remaining talks include:
June 13 - "Backyard beetles: Using citizen science to uncover beetle biodiversity hidden in plain site," presented by Matt Kasson, WVU assistant professor of plant pathology.
June 20 - "Migratory birds in WVU Core Arboretum," presented by Chris Rota, WVU assistant professor of wildlife and fisheries resources.
June 27 - Jesse Fallon, veterinarian at the Avian Conservation Center of Appalachia, will talk about the center and wild bird and animal rehabilitation.
The 2017 WVU Core Arboretum Nature Connect Series is supported by the WVU Department of Biology, the WVU Core Arboretum Endowment and the Robert C. Cull Outreach Fellowship.