Wolf Talk

D.Smith-WolfJoin the JLT Natural History Society and Western Wildlife Outreach on Thursday, October 16, for an entertaining evening of “Wolf Talk” with David Moskowitz, well-known wildlife tracker and author of Wolves in the Land of Salmon. Moskowitz will share stories, images, and video clips from the recent OR7 Expedition, which retraced the wanderings of a young male gray wolf, who traversed more than 1,200 miles through Oregon and into California.

The wolf dubbed OR7 was captured and outfitted with a GPS collar in 2011 by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, to follow his journey via satellite signals across multiple mountain ranges, a vast desert, and past numerous towns and cities along the way. OR7 made international news as he wandered to California, becoming the first wolf to be documented there in 90 years. In the spring of 2014 Moskowitz, along with a filmmaker and other stalwart participants, launched an expedition to follow the approximate path of OR7 on foot and by bicycle. The adventurous mission led the team to fresh insights on what it means to share the landscape with large carnivores in the contemporary world.

David will be joined by local carnivore experts, Lorna and Darrell Smith, of the non-profit Western Wildlife Outreach (WWO), who will discuss Washington’s recovering gray wolf population. WWO is a Port Townsend based organization dedicated to providing accurate, science-based information on bears, wolves, and cougars. The organization aims to promote wildlife-safe communities, at the same time striving to restore and maintain healthy populations of these iconic animals, whose roots in the Pacific Northwest extend to millions of years ago.

David Moskowitz is a professional wildlife tracker, photographer, and outdoor educator. He has contributed his technical expertise to a wide variety of wildlife studies, employing tracking and other non-invasive methods to study wildlife ecology and promote conservation. Moscowitz helped establish the Cascade Citizen Wildlife Monitoring Project, whose participants search for and observe rare and sensitive wildlife in the Cascades and other Northwest wildlands.

The Natural History Society is an offshoot organization of the Jefferson Land Trust. It was founded in 2012 to foster active exploration, appreciation, understanding, and conservation of the diverse natural environments of the Olympic Peninsula and beyond.

The “Wolf Talk” program will take place at 7:00 pm, Thursday, October 16, at the Cotton Building, 607 Water Street, Port Townsend. This event is free and open to the public. A $5 donation will help defray the costs and support future programs.


An outing on the Elwha River

Once again the Elwha flows freely from its headwaters in the Olympic Mountains to the Strait of Juan de Fuca.

Join us for a walking tour on Tuesday, October 7 at 9:00 am to witness the changes along the river and the awesome delta that was created from the sediment behind the dams. Already the Elwha River has replenished the coast, restored the ecosystem and diversity of plants and animals, allowed the migration of spawning salmon, and is restoring the traditional culture of the Elwha Tribe.

Our leader on this walking tour will be Ian Miller, Coastal Hazards Specialist, Washington Sea Grant. The tour will be limited to 12 people.

For reservation, directions, and carpooling information contact Dick Stockment at: 360-775-4790 or rstockment@aol.com.


October Book Club Selection

In earshot of waterThe Natural History Society Book Club will meet at 3:30 on Monday, October 27, to discuss In Earshot of Water: Notes from the Columbia Plateau, by Paul Lindholdt.

Whether the subject is the plants that grow there, the animals that live there, the rivers that run there, or the people he has known there, Paul Lindholdt’s In Earshot of Water illuminates the Pacific Northwest in vivid detail. Lindholdt writes with the precision of a naturalist, the critical eye of an ecologist, the affection of an apologist, and  the self-revelation and self-awareness of a personal essayist in the manner of Annie Dillard, Loren Eiseley, Derrick Jensen, John McPhee, Robert Michael Pyle, and Kathleen Dean Moore.

Exploring both the literal and literary sense of place, with particular emphasis on environmental issues and politics in the Northwest, Lindholdt weds passages from the journals of Lewis and Clark, the log of Captain James Cook, the novelized memoir of Theodore Winthrop, and Bureau of Reclamation records growing from the paintings that the agency commissioned to publicize its dams in the 1960s and 1970s, to tell ecological and personal histories of the region he knows and loves.

In Lindholdt’s beautiful prose, America’s environmental legacies—those inherited from his blood relatives as well as those from the influences of mass culture—and illuminations of  the hazards of neglecting nature’s warning signs blur and merge and reemerge in new forms. Themes of fathers and sons layer the book, as well—the narrator as father and as son—interwoven with a call to responsible social activism with appeals to reason and emotion. Like water itself, In Earshot of Water cascades across boundaries and blends genres, at once learned and literary.

RSVP to Chris for location at JLTnatural@saveland.org.

A Walk through the Tarboo

Join the Natural History Society on Wednesday, September 10, for a walk with naturalists on private property in the lovely Tarboo Valley north of Dabob Bay. We will follow a mile of well-groomed trails through 28 acres of recovering woodland with some trees more than 150 years old. The trails wind through classic Olympic forest, descending to a creek in a steep ravine and rising up to a meadow with views across the valley.

256Bring a snack and water and field guides for plants and animals.

RSVP to Dave and get details about when and where to meet via JLTnatural@saveland.org Restricted to 12 hikers.

September Book Club Selection

Crow PlanetThe Natural History Society Book Club will meet at 3:30 on Monday, September 22, to discuss Crow Planet: Essential Wisdom from the Urban Wilderness, by Lyanda Lynn Haupt.

There are more crows now than ever. Their abundance is both a sign of ecological imbalance and a generous opportunity to connect with the animal world. Crow Planet is a call to experience the wildlife in our midst, reminding us that we don’t have to head to faraway places to encounter “nature.” Even in the cities and suburbs where we live we are surrounded by wildlife such as crows. Through observing them we enhance our appreciation of the world’s natural order, and find our own place in it.

Haupt, a trained naturalist, uses science, scholarly research, myth, and personal observation to draw readers into the “crow stories” that unfold around us every day, culminating in book that transforms the way we experience our neighborhoods and our world.

Please RSVP to Pat at jltnatural@saveland.org for location.