Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Gopher Tortoise Council Meeting Details

The Gopher Tortoise Council, ALAPARC's partner in reptile conservation, has announced the details of their upcoming meeting:

Please join us October 7-10, 2010 at the Alabama 4-H Center in Columbiana, Alabama for the 32nd Annual Gopher Tortoise Council Meeting.

REGISTRATION DEADLINE IS AUGUST 20th (link to registration below). Abstract submission is now also open.

Preliminary Agenda:

Thursday, October 7: GTC Business Meeting

Friday, October 8: Special Alabama Session and Panel Discussion Regarding the Potential Implications of a Range-wide Federal Listing

Friday will kick off with a keynote presentation by Craig Guyer (Auburn
University) followed by presentations highlighting tortoise and longleaf pine research and conservation in Alabama. In the afternoon, a panel discussion will convene to discuss how a federal listing will influence various stakeholders. A question and answer session will allow the audience to participate.

Saturday, October 9: Ecology and Habitat Conservation and Ray Ashton Tribute

Conference sessions will focus on traditional meeting topics, such as gopher tortoise ecology, commensal species ecology, and upland habitat conservation efforts. On Saturday afternoon, we will remember a gopher tortoise conservation pioneer.

Hotel: This year's meeting will be held at the Alabama 4-H Center in Columbiana, Alabama. Lodging is included in registration packages (link below).

Saturday Evening Social: Join us Saturday night on-site for beverages and the musical stylings of Olin Howlin, an Auburn favorite.

We were able to keep costs for our meeting low by creating registration packages, please select one that best fits your schedule. All packages include Gopher Tortoise Council Meeting Registration (Use PayPal to pay, you may do so below the package descriptions). Send an e-mail to with questions.



Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Indigo Reintroduction as of 6/23/2010

Indigo Snake update 6/23/10

The first week of tracking the released Indigo Snakes brought some exciting events. The first snake tracked on the day after the release was found eating a Copperhead. This confirmed a prediction of mine, that these venomous snakes would play a role in the diet of the Indigo snakes! The event was captured on HI DEF video by the Discovering Alabama team so be looking for the footage on the show about the Indigo Snake repatriation program. Another was seen devouring a Gray Rat Snake. One of the snakes was found to be 20-30 ft. up in trees with thick brush and vines twice. The best news is that after one week all the snakes are accounted for, and all seem to be doing well. They appear to be adjusting to the wild just fine. Stay tuned to new posts for the latest updates on what the snakes are doing in the wild.

Indigo Snake Updates From the Field

You've likely already heard a lot about the recent indigo snake reintroduction project in Conecuh National Forest (if not, click here). But here's something you don't know: those tasked with monitoring the released snakes have agreed to provide news on how and what the snakes are doing via this blog! Stay tuned for updates from the field from Jimmy and Sierra Stiles.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Volunteer info for Alabama oil spill efforts

With oil beginning to wash ashore on Alabama's coasts, more and more individuals are attempting to find info on how to volunteer. This blog post will attempt to condense links of several organizations within the state involved in coordinating volunteer efforts or information on efforts related to the spill. One of ALAPARC's partner organizations, The Nature Conservancy, has designed a webpage where those interested can view detailed information on current and planned efforts, as well as a link for registering to volunteer. In addition, the Alabama Coastal Foundation and Alabama Wildlife Federation have links on their sites where volunteers can register and view info on efforts on the Alabama coast. Lastly, the governor's office has set up a webpage through its Office of Community Initiatives that lists several opportunities and avenues for those wishing to volunteer.

This list is but a small sampling of opportunities available through both nonprofits local to Alabama and more broad organizations, such as the Audubon Society, that are focusing efforts across the entire Gulf region. Both unpaid volunteer opportunities and paid positions are available through different groups depending on background and training. Restoration efforts will likely continue long after initial attention on the spill declines, so be sure to keep monitoring these outlets and others if you have interests in helping with volunteer efforts. Also feel free to post other opportunities with groups in the state in the comments below this post, if you know of them. Just remember to make sure that any time or money you choose to donate to the spill recovery is going through a reputable organization such as those listed above.