Author Archives: jltnature

Herring and Birding at Fort Flagler

Join the Natural History Society on SaturdayMarch 23, for a two-part outing exploring Fort Flagler. First, Biological Technician Willie Richards will lead a late morning tour of the USGS- Marrowstone Marine Field Station. He will explain their research on Pacific Herring and the focus on disease and pathology. Willie will also tell us about some of the highlights of his experience with USGS, including field sampling in Cordova, Alaska, and capturing wild Pacific Herring in the nearby waters of Puget Sound. For background on herring:

Test your herring knowledge

Bald Eagle

After our tour of the USGS Field Station, we will eat our picnic lunches and wander a bit in Fort Flagler to look for seabirds and other birds. Naturalist and expert birder Ken Wilson will lead our birding.

RSVP to Eileen at JLTnatural@saveland.orgfor details about when and where to meet, as well as information about disinfectants required before entering the USGS Field Station.

May 2019 Book Selection

On Monday, May 20, the JLT Natural History Society book club will discuss Eager by Ben Goldfarb.

We will meet at the Ilahee Preserve from 3:30 – 5:00. Let’s congregate at the parking lot across from San Juan Taqueria on Prospect Avenue at 3:15, carpooling from there to the Ilahee.  (Jefferson Land Trust is doing what it can to minimize the number of cars on the road and in the parking lot at Ilahee.)




Ben Goldfarb, Eager: The Surprising, Secret Life of Beavers and Why They Matter (2018) is the story of one of the world’s most influential species and the ecological consequences when that species is lost.  This book reveals how beavers can help us fight drought, flooding, wildfire, extinction, and the ravages of climate change. Habitat for species from salmon to swans can be restored by returning beavers to the landscape. There is a growing coalition of “Beaver Believers”―including scientists, ranchers, and passionate citizens―who recognize that ecosystems with beavers are far healthier, for humans and non-humans alike, than those without them. This book describes both the elimination of beavers as well as current efforts to reintroduce them in various geographic regions.

Birdsong at North Beach

Redwing Blackbird

Join the Natural History Society on Saturday morning, April 13, for a bird walk focusing on birdsong. Expert naturalists Ken Wilson and Dave Rugh will lead an exhilarating outing teaching us to recognize some of our common birds by their songs. They will share insights on the functions and ecology of birdsong, and enhance our listening skills and appreciation of beautiful spring mornings. 

White-crowned Sparrow

We will walk through the North Beach neighborhood, mostly on level ground with some small hills. Be prepared for any weather by dressing in layers, and bring binoculars and a field guide, if you have one. Please RSVP to Nan at for details and to find out time and meeting location.


April 2019 Book Selection

The JLT Natural History Society book club will read Beyond the Outer Shores by Eric Enno Tamm in April 2019.  We will meet on Monday, April 22, at the Charles Pink House next to the Port Townsend Carnegie Library 3:30-5:00.





Beyond the Outer Shores: The Untold Odyssey of Ed Ricketts, the Pioneering Ecologist Who Inspired John Steinbeck and Joseph Campbell is a biography of the man who was the inspiration for “Doc” in Steinbeck’s writings on Cannery Row.  Ricketts was the not formally trained but influential marine biologist who wrote Between Pacific Tides, the widely known text on intertidal zones.  His ecological and philosophical thoughts were way ahead of his time, and as the subtitle states, many of the ideas of Steinbeck and Campbell can be attributed to their association with Ricketts.

March 2019 Book Selection

In March 2019 the Jefferson Land Trust Natural History Society book club will read What a Plant Knows by Daniel Chamovitz.  We will discuss the book at our meeting on Monday, March 25, to be held at the Charles Pink House (next to the Carnegie Library in Port Townsend), from 3:30-5:00.



Renowned biologist Daniel Chamovitz presents an intriguing look at how plants themselves experience the world―from the colors they see to the schedules they keep. Highlighting the latest research in genetics and more, he takes us into the inner lives of plants and draws parallels with the human senses to reveal that we have much more in common with sunflowers and oak trees than we may realize.  Covering touch, sound, smell, sight, and even memory,  What a Plant Knows offers us a greater understanding of botany and science and our place in nature.