‘DIVERSE WORLD’: Summer lecture series at Nisqually refuge kicks off Wednesday

Visitors to Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge can learn more about the environment by attending the 2014 Summer Lecture Series that begins Wednesday. This is the 27th year the series will take place.

The theme for this year’s series is “Exploring Our Diverse World,” and it features a variety of talks on environmental topics ranging from crows to wolves to great blue herons.

The free lectures are held on Wednesday evenings during July and August.

Here is the series schedule:

Wednesday: “Oceans and Climate Change” by Peter Rhines, professor of oceanography and atmospheric sciences at the University of Washington.

July 16: “Gifts of the Crow” by John Marzluff, professor of forest sciences at University of Washington.

July 23: “Sea Ice Loss and Arctic Marine Mammals in Greenland” by Kristin Laidre of the University of Washington’s Polar Science Center.

July 30: “Wolves of Washington” by Michelle Tirhi, district biologist for Thurston and Pierce counties for the state Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Aug. 6: “Great Blue Herons of the Puget Sound” by Kate Stenberg, a senior wildlife biologist for CDM Smith in Seattle.

Aug. 13: “Birds and Plants – They Need Each Other” by Dennis Paulson, author and director emeritus of the Slater Museum of Natural History at the University of Puget Sound.

Aug. 20: “National Wildlife Refuges of the Hawaiian and Pacific Islands by Glynnis Nakai, manager of the Nisqually refuge.

Aug. 27: “Small Watersheds, Big Ideas: 25 Years of the Nisqually Land Trust” by Joe Kane, executive director of the Nisqually Land Trust.

The lectures begin at 7 p.m. and are held at the refuge’s Norm Dicks Visitor Center auditorium. They last about one hour, with time afterward for questions. Attendance is limited to 100 and seating will be issued starting at 6 p.m. on a first-come basis. Each attendee must be present to get a seat. The refuge’s $3 entrance fee is waived for those attending the lectures. On lecture nights, the visitor center will be open until 7 p.m. and again after the lecture.

For more information, call the refuge office at 360-753-9467.