2021-2022 Speakers


Jeff Leichty

January 6

Join us at Jeff Leichty teaches us about the biology of the charismatic American Oystercatcher, including life history, nesting ecology, behavior, habitat use, and banding studies. Jeff, a coastal biologist with Audubon Florida,  manages and monitors colonial waterbird nesting islands throughout the Tampa Bay region at Florida Coastal Islands Sanctuaries.  The presentation will also highlight Audubon Florida's work to conserve bird species in the Tampa Bay region, and the colonial waterbirds that nest and roost at Florida Coastal Islands Sanctuaries islands.

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Shelly Johnson, Ph.D.

October 7

Join us as Dr. Shelly Johnson of the University of Florida IFAS gives us an overview of bats and bat habitat in Florida, clarification about misconceptions and myths, a discussion on their importance to the ecosystem, and information on how to help conserve these species.


Brandon Bassett

December 2

Join us as Brandon Bassett explains how causes of death are determined in manatees. Since 2007, Brandon has worked as a marine biologist with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission conducting marine mammal rescues, carcass recoveries, necropsies, and other research. Brandon maintainis the national Manatee Mortality Database and reviews all manatee necropsy reports.


Shawnlei Breeding

November 4

Join us as Audubon EagleWatch Project Manager Shawnlei Breeding tells us about the history of the bald eagle in America, the decline of its population, protection efforts, current population estimates, nest monitoring activities, and current threats to the species.


Reed Bowman, Ph.D.

September 2

Dr. Reed Bowman, Avian Ecology Program Director at Archbold Biological Station will talk about the endangered Florida Grasshopper Sparrow, their current population status, the forces that led to its rarity, and the cooperative work by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the Florida Park Service, Archbold Biological Station, Audubon Florida, and others collaborating on an aggressive recovery effort.

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