Select Page
Our winter lecture series consists of weekly daytime (Lunch and Learn) or monthly evening (Covered Dish Dinner) presentations occurring onsite at The Wetlands Institute.  Throughout the series, guest presenters from around the state share presentations and/or programs on a variety of scientific and cultural topics.

Lunch and Learn – Weekly

Join us for a weekly exploration of topics important to our coastal and wetland ecosystems. Bring your lunch and The Wetlands Institute will provide coffee and dessert. Each week we will feature a different speaker and topic of discussion!

When:  Fridays at 11:45am from January 10 – March 20 except on dates of Covered Dish Dinners (January 31, February 28, and March 27)
Admission: $3 for members and $5 non-members

Please Note:  There are NO Lunch and Learn presentations on dates of Covered Dish Dinner events.

Friday, January 10, 2020 – Getting Lit: Ultraviolet Induced Visible Fluorescence in Saltmarsh Biota

Presented by: Brandon Henry, Junior Biology Major at Stockton University and 2019 Environmental Education Intern at The Wetlands Institute

Ultraviolet Induced Visible Fluorescence, or UVIVF is a fairly recent discovery and still a relatively understudied natural phenomenon that causes certain creatures to glow under UV light exposure. This presentation will cover introductory information, what causes it, how it is of interest to us, and finally, display local salt marsh animals that exhibit it.

Friday, January 17, 2020  We Put a Ring On It: Committed to the Recovery of the American Oystercatcher

Presented by: Samantha Collins, Research Scientist, The Wetlands Institute

Come learn about one of New Jersey’s most beloved shorebird species, the American Oystercatcher! During this presentation, our new research scientist, Samantha Collins, will acquaint you with some interesting facts about the species, discuss some of the challenges populations have faced, and introduce efforts to monitor and band birds near the Institute. Attendees will learn what we have discovered about oystercatcher movements and survival from ongoing efforts, as well as how to get involved and support us in our mission to protect this majestic bird.

Friday, January 24, 2020 Terrapin Track Stars

Presented by: Glen Davis, Biologist and Technician, Cellular Tracking Technologies

Join Glen Davis as he shares how The Wetlands Institute and Cellular Tracking Technologies are partnering to drive cutting-edge research that applies the newest technology in wildlife tracking to reveal the mysterious, muddy lives of Northern Diamondback Terrapins and other denizens of the marsh.  

Friday, February 7, 2020 Welcome Back Bluebirds

Presented by: Gail Fisher, Cape May County Coordinator, NJ Bluebird Society

Join Gail Fisher, Cape May County Coordinator for the NJ Bluebird Society since 2016, as she discusses the habitat, nesting preferences, and active monitoring needed to increase the bluebird’s chances of raising a healthy brood. Also, certified to band bluebirds, and having banded over 200 chicks in Cape May County during the 2019 season, Gail will discuss her work here in Cape May County.

Friday, February 14, 2020 Biology and Management of Purple Martins 

Presented by: Allen Jackson, President, NJ Bluebird Society representing the Purple Martin Conservation Association (PMCA)

Allen Jackson is a Wildlife Biologist retired from the US Fish and Wildlife Service in 2002 after 31 years. He is a martin mentor for the PMCA and has learned the importance of proper management for both Purple Martins and the Eastern Bluebird. These two species thrive on and respond to active management. During these difficult times of decreasing avian species, proper management may be the key to ensure these species are around for future generations to enjoy.

Friday, February 21, 2020 New Jersey and Back Again: Meet and Greet with Erin Rawls

Presented by: Erin Rawls, Outreach Coordinator, The Wetlands Institute

Come meet and get to know the new Outreach Coordinator for The Wetlands Institute, Erin Rawls. Learn about her journey as an environmental educator working from Florida to California, and how it’s brought her back to New Jersey time and time again. You’ll also learn about how The Wetlands Institute is working to incorporate new technology into our SEAS program and other outreach programs!

Friday, March 6, 2020 A Temporal Comparison of Trophic Physiology and Tissue Heavy Metal Accumulation in Northern Star Coral, Astrangia poculata

Presented by: Wolf Trumbauer, Villanova University, Department of Geography and the Environment

Tropical coral species are threatened by climate change and human activity; one conservation approach is to study related, yet common species. Astrangia poculata is a temperate coral that can improve our understanding of coral physiology because it lives with and without symbiotic algae, a situation parallel to coral bleaching that affects the tropics. However, the costs and benefits of these life strategies are not well understood. Learn how I am studying A. poculata’s nutrient acquisition, lipid storage, and heavy metal uptake to fill literature gaps so future studies may use A. poculata as a model for conservation studies of threatened corals.

Friday, March 13, 2020 Sea Turtles are Stubborn and Here’s Why

Presented by: Danielle Meeker, Aquarist/Environmental Educator, The Wetlands Institute

Dani Meeker is our newly hired Aquarist/Environmental Educator. As a previous Environmental Education Intern at The Wetlands Institute (TWI), Dani will discuss her experiences working with sea turtles post internship that ultimately helped bring her back to TWI. She will share the ups and downs of working with sea turtles, from rainy nesting seasons to happy hatchlings to sea turtle rehabilitation!

Friday, March 20, 2019 101 Great Birds from Around the World

Presented by: Mark Garland

Join Naturalist Mark Garland for a celebration of the diversity of bird life here on Planet Earth. With a mix of video clips and still images, Mark will share stories about birds big and small, colorful and drab, spotlighting some of the remarkable stories about bird behavior and biology. Mark Garland has been leading nature tours, field trips, workshops, and classes about natural history topics for more than 40 years. He lives in West Cape May.

Covered Dish Dinners – Monthly

Nothing could be better than an evening filled with meeting new people, eating great food and engaging in scientific discussion! Join us the last Friday of each month, January – March, as we bring in guest speakers from around the region to share their knowledge of important issues in the field of environmental science and biology. In the spirit of covered dish dinners, please bring an appetizer, entrée, salad or dessert to share with at least eight people. 

When:  Fridays, 6:00pm, January 31, February 28, and March 27
Admission: $7 for members and $12 for non-members, plus a covered dish to share

Friday, January 31, 2020 Multi-scalar Studies in Changing Wetland Landscapes

Presented by: Keith VanDerSys and Sean Burkholder, University of Pennsylvania, Stuart Weitzman School of Design, Department of Landscape Architecture

Listen as Keith and Sean present their work from a Landscape Architecture research seminar held at the Weitzman School of Design that is using remotely collected data (visual, topographic, and multi-spectral) acquired at various scales and resolutions in order to speculatively project landscape change in and around The Wetlands Institute and southern New Jersey back bay systems. They will be presenting this set of speculative projections, aimed loosely at 50 years into the future, as a collection of visual materials and videos.

Friday, February 28, 2020 The Winds of Change 

Presented by: Kris Ohleth, Senior Stakeholder Relations Manager, US Stakeholder Management Offshore, Ørsted

Offshore wind energy has been a major source of renewable energy in Europe for nearly three decades, however there are no utility-scale offshore wind projects here in the United States. Meanwhile, the United States boasts some of the most ideal conditions for offshore wind development in the world. Come and learn more about the status of offshore wind development in the US, and how and why it is currently poised to be at the center of the next energy boom. Find out more about the technology, geography, financing, environmental issues, and policies that are involved in developing and building an offshore wind farm, and when and where you can expect to see a wind farm off our New Jersey coast.

Friday, March 27, 2020 Exploring the Enchanted Isles: Excursion to the Galapagos with The Wetlands Institute  

Presented by: Dr. Lenore Tedesco, Executive Director and Dr. Lisa Ferguson, Director of Research and Conservation, The Wetlands Institute

Drs. Tedesco and Ferguson are just back from hosting an ecotour to the Galapagos Islands. Come learn about the trip, see amazing pictures, and explore conservation issues common to the Galapagos and coastal New Jersey.