Spring Amphibians and Vernal Pools (Talk and Walk)
2:00PM - 3:30PM
Throughout the Northeast, one of the most predictable and eagerly anticipated events in nature is the annual spring migration of amphibians. Frogs and salamanders undertake a perilous journey as they emerge from their overwintering retreats and navigate at night and in the rain. They arrive at specialized wetlands called vernal pools to perform fascinating courtship and breeding behaviors.
Tom Tyning, Professor of Environmental Science at Berkshire Community College, will share stories of this ecologically complex community through vivid photographs and recent research endeavors. At the conclusion of the one-hour talk, you will have an opportunity to take a short walk to Wellfleet Bay’s vernal pool with Professor Tyning (as weather permits).
Tom Tyning has been a Professor of Environmental Science at Berkshire Community College since 1999. Before this he was a Field Biologist and Master Naturalist with the Massachusetts Audubon Society for 24 years. He also served for 15 years as an Adjunct Professor in the Environmental Studies Program at Antioch New England Graduate School (Amphibian Biology, Ornithology, Field Entomology, Reptile Biology) and at Springfield College (Ornithology). For 25 years he wrote a weekly newspaper column about nature for the Springfield (MA) Union-News. An authority on New England natural history, his main research interests are amphibians and reptiles. His first book, A Guide To Amphibians and Reptiles, was published by Little, Brown and Co. A member of several professional natural history societies, he served for fifteen years as Managing Editor of the scientific journal, Herpetological Review. Throughout the year he conducts various short and long-term field research projects on vernal pools, rare salamanders, and endangered snake species in Western Massachusetts. Tom received both his Bs (Wildlife Biology) and Ms (Organismic and Evolutionary Biology) from the University of Massachusetts (Amherst), where he focused on the biology and conservation of the timber rattlesnake.
$10 members/ $12 non-members