Special Summer edition of Audubon eNews
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July 2016
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Vamos al Bosque - Let’s go to the forest 
Vamos al Bosque Gina Ghertner teaching

“Vamos al Bosque,” translated let's go to the forest, is a project funded by PNC Bank to connect Latino families with young children with nature. On a Saturday morning in May, eight families attended the program at Woodend Nature Sanctuary, which included a one-hour hike around the grounds. 

The hike was led by ANS Naturalist Gina Ghertner, whose lessons were given in Spanish. The children listened intently as she pointed out the “árbol de maple” (maple tree), let them touch a “babosa” (slug), or taught them about the nocturnal habits of the “murciélago” (bat). Serenella Linares, also an ANS naturalist, translated the information into English for those who needed.

Alvaro Matus brought his sons Leonardo and Alexandro to the nature hike because of their questions. “They are very curious. They like to discuss things. They ask a lot of questions about how things work,” Matus said.

“We work to get the parents on board, teaching the kids along with us,” said ANS Director of Education Diane Lill as she looked out over the group gazing at a colorful mallard duck on the pond. “It’s a good family experience.” 

ANS also held the program with Croydon Creek Nature Center in Rockville in June. Look for more Vamos al Bosque programs with ANS this fall. 

Cape Breton Island Nature Travel Ad

Meet New ANS Board Members 

Wendy Anderson, Jane Davenport McClintock and Alice Ewen are a few of the newest members of the ANS Board of Directors. We asked them a few questions about providing leadership to Audubon Naturalist Society. 

Why did you choose ANS?
Wendy Anderson: My first contact with ANS was about 5 years ago when I took a class in Animal Behavior from Jane Huff. ... I learned so much from Jane. Loved the field trips.  ... I have taken other classes and seminars at ANS, and attended the Saturday morning birding walks.  Last year I read in the Naturalist [Quarterly] that ANS was looking for board members. And I volunteered because ANS has enriched my life in so many ways, opened my eyes to many marvels in nature, that I wanted to give back if I could.

What aspect of being on the ANS Board excites you the most? 
Jane Davenport McClintock: It is inspiring to work with ANS staff and board members -- I learn so much from all of them. I am particularly excited about the master planning process and I can't wait to see the final master plan. 

What have you learned so far?
Alice Ewen: I continue to be impressed by the talent, dedication, and optimism of the staff. I think ANS has a great team in place to bring about the growth envisioned for the future. And, I’ve also learned a lot about the destructive habits of deer as they love our landscapes to death!

What does the future look like for ANS?
Anderson: The future of ANS is one I'm excited about.  
Davenport McClintock: I think ANS is being extremely thoughtful in the current master planning process not only about current needs and goals but about the needs of the organization into the future as well. 

If you're passionate about the ANS mission, can contribute to building a 
network of ANS supporters around the region and want to participate in 
planning strategically for the future of the organization, conact Pam Oves to express your interest in Board service. 

Summer 2016 Naturalist Quarterly Ad Read Now

Become a Master Naturalist 
 Paula Wang

Do you love learning about the natural world? Volunteering? What about learning about nature AND volunteering? You're perfect for the ANS Master Naturalist volunteer training program.

Master Naturalist is a state-wide program of the University of Maryland Extension that certifies naturalists through classroom education as well as field work and volunteer service. Once certified, naturalists, “engage citizens as stewards of Maryland’s natural resources and ecosystems through science-based education and volunteer service in their communities.” ANS has been a host site for the program since 2011.  

Instruction is specific to one of three physiographic regions in Maryland: the Coastal Plain, Piedmont, or Mountain Region. ANS is in the Piedmont Region. The ANS program intstructors are university scientists, government resource managers and our own Natural History Field Studies instructors and ANS Senior Naturalist Stephanie Mason. 

In total, to earn the Master Naturalist certification, the requirement is 52 hours of training in the ecology, flora and fauna of Maryland; 8 hours of hands-on field work; and 40 hours of volunteer service the first year. To maintain certification, Master Naturalists continue to provide at least 40 hours of service each year along with a minimum of 8 hours of approved advanced training, which may consist of lectures, educational field experiences, conferences, briefing sessions or course work. Our adult programs offer plenty of opportunities for Master Naturalists to keep their skills fresh. 

Paula Wang was certified in ANS's 2014 Volunteer Master Naturalist class:

“Since completing the program I have been involved with a variety of projects from working the ANS table at community events, to stream monitoring, participating in the [Woodend] sanctuary/University of MD deer count, to a multitude of education/interpretation programs. The bulk of my service hours have been in the education arena and have included the development of interpretive materials (for the ANS Banks Bird Collection and for two Camp Audubon programs) and working in a wide variety of the educational programs (in-school and sanctuary school programs, after school programs, family weekend walks, Creek Critters, Green Kids, salad science) and as a leader at Camp Audubon. The best part of becoming a Master Naturalist is spending time sharing my love of the natural world with others.” 

The application deadline to join the ANS's 2016 Volunteer Master Naturalist class is August 1, 2016. This fall, the class will meet at Woodend on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:30 am to 2:30 pm, September 27 through November 10, 2016. There is a $250 fee paid to UMD Extension for the cost of materials. 

Apply Now

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 Audubon Naturalist Society

© Audubon Naturalist Society

Rust Sanctuary
802 Childrens Center Road
Leesburg, VA 20175
Phone: 703-669-0000
Fax: 703-669-1234

Woodend Sanctuary (Headquarters)
8940 Jones Mill Road
Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Phone: 301-652-9188
Fax: 301-951-7179

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