California Department of Fish and Wildlife

CDFW Conservation Lecture Series

The CDFW Habitat Conservation Planning Branch is pleased to announce the Conservation Lecture Series. The lecture series is designed to deliver the most current scientific information about species that are of conservation concern.

Below is a list of lectures and speakers for CDFW’s Conservation Lecture Series. Lectures are open to anyone who is interested in participating. Participants may attend in-person or remotely via WebEx. Please be sure to register for each class. Lectures are recorded and posted for those unable to attend the day of the event. Scroll down to see recordings of past lectures.

Upcoming Lectures

California Red-Legged Frog – September 9, 1:00-3:00 pm. Presented by Jeff Alvarez

California red-legged frog and California tiger salamander. © Jeff Alvarez, The Wildlife Project

Enrollment

Biologist, Jeff Alvarez, has been working with sympatric populations of California tiger salamanders and California red-legged frogs for nearly 20 years.  These apparently disparate species have many similarities and differences, yet aquatic and upland management techniques that support one species appear to support the other.  Since the range of red-legged frogs and tiger salamanders overlap over a large area in California, species' management can impact or benefit both species.  Jeff will present a lecture that includes discussion about the benefits of grazing, silt and vegetation removal, ground squirrel management, as well as habitat associations, rate of sympatry, inter-annual variability in observed breeding, and more, time permitting.

Location: Natural Resources Building, ground floor auditorium
1416 Ninth Street
Sacramento, CA, 95814

 

Townsend’s Big-Eared Bat – October 7, 1:00-3:00 pm. Presented by Dr. Dave Johnston

Townsend’s big-eared bat. © Dr. Dave Johnston

Enrollment

The Townsend’s big-eared bat is a candidate species under the California Endangered Species Act. Dr. Dave Johnston, an Associate Ecologist and Bat Biologist at H.T. Harvey & Associates has worked with bats since 1992. Dr. Johnston will present an overview of the life history of the species, population status, current threats because of fire suppression and mine closures, and will discuss management and ongoing research.

Location: Natural Resources Building, ground floor auditorium
1416 Ninth Street
Sacramento, CA, 95814

 

Coming Soon

Mohave Ground Squirrel – November 6, 2014. Presented by Dr. Phil Leitner

Spartina and California Clapper Rails – November 17, 2014. Presented by Dr. Donald Strong

Foothill Yellow-Legged Frog and Stream Ecology – December 3, 2014. Presented by Dr. Sarah Kupferberg

Rare Plants in Pine Hill – January 22, 2015. Presented by Dr. Debra Ayres

Bighorn Sheep – February 4, 2015. Presented by Dr. Jeff Villepique. Location: Ontario

Invasive Watersnakes – March 12, 2015. Presented by Dr. Brian Todd

 

Past Lectures

Rearing Salmon in the Yolo Bypass – August 25, 2014. Presented by Carson Jeffres

Carson Jeffres, field and laboratory director for the UC Davis Center for Watershed Science, will discuss recent research on use of harvested rice fields as potential salmon nurseries. Frequently inundated large floodplains are functionally extinct in the Central Valley; many of the ecological benefits have been lost to riverine species. Since 2012 Jeffres has been studying whether flooded post-harvest rice fields can act as a surrogate for this lost habitat. Jeffres found that juvenile Chinook salmon on flooded rice fields grow at some of the fastest freshwater growth rates (.95mm/day) of juvenile salmon ever found in California. This talk will focus on what makes this surrogate floodplain productive and how inter-annual variation in weather dictates when and where conditions are suitable for the rearing juvenile Chinook salmon.

Video: Coming Soon!

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.

Presentation Materials


White Abalone – July 22, 2014. Presented by Dr. Kristin Aquilino

In 2001, white abalone became the first marine invertebrate to be federally listed as endangered, after intense over fishing in the 1970s severely depleted their population. Enhancement of the wild population through captive propagation was identified as the primary avenue for reversing the population's current trajectory toward extinction. In 2012, the Bodega Marine Laboratory celebrated the first instance of captive white abalone reproduction in nearly a decade, and small successes in captive reproduction have continued. Dr. Aquilino will discuss overcoming challenges in broodstock reproductive conditioning and increasing the survival of newly settled animals, which will help accelerate captive propagation and the recovery of wild white abalone populations.

Video: White Abalone. Photo by Sammy Tillery

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.

Presentation Materials


Amargosa Vole – June 9, 2014. Presented by Dr. Janet Foley and Dr. Robert Klinger

The Amargosa vole is an endangered species with the possibility of extinction without immediate and on-going recovery actions. The presenters discuss population dynamics, habitat selection, occupancy patterns, and relationship of water to the distribution of the vole's habitat.

Video: Amargosa Vole. Photo by Dr. Janet Foley, UC Davis

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.

Presentation Materials


Desert Tortoise – May 22, 2014. Presented by Dr. Becky Jones

Rebecca Jones has been working with CDFW in the desert area since 1992 and is the Department lead for desert tortoise. In her presentation, Becky will be discussing desert tortoise biology, populations, threats, translocation and permitting.

Video: Desert Tortoise. Photo by Melanie Day, CDFW

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.

Presentation Materials


Shasta Crayfish – April 29, 2014. Presented by Dr. Maria Ellis

Dr. Ellis has been studying the ecology of aquatic species in northeastern California since 1990. She wrote the Shasta crayfish draft recovery plan for CDFW and assisted USFWS in the preparation of the final recovery plan for the Shasta crayfish. Dr. Ellis helped to develop a Safe Harbor Agreement for Shasta Crayfish. In her presentation, Dr. Ellis discusses the ecology of the species, threats, and management activities that encourage recovery of the species and restoration of its habitat.

Video: Shasta Crayfish Lecture

Video: Visit to the field site

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.

Presentation Materials


California Tiger Salamander – April 28, 2014. Presented by Dr. Chris Searcy

Dr. Searcy presents an overview of the natural history of this species. Dr. Searcy addresses seasonal activity and responses to weather patterns as well as migration distances and density distribution throughout the habitat. Dr. Searcy describes his most recent study results on hybridization with the invasive barred tiger salamander.

Video: California tiger salamander. Photo by Margaret Mantor, CDFW

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.

Presentation Materials


Alameda Striped Racer – April 24, 2014. Presented by Karen Swaim

Karen Swaim presents current scientific information on Alameda striped racer. Her lecture focuses on the life history of the species, including biology, habitat use, and behavior. Karen addresses conservation and management issues.

Video unavailable

Presentation Materials


Cactus Wren – April 17, 2014. Presented by Dr. Kristine Preston

The coastal cactus wren has declined precipitously in southern California over the last twenty years as a result of habitat loss and fragmentation due to urbanization and catastrophic wildfires. Dr. Preston discusses results of a regional collaborative partnership that has worked to address key questions critical to developing effective management actions to halt the wren’s decline.

Video: Cactus wrem. Photo by Steve Brad, USGS

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.

Presentation Materials


Sierra Nevada and Sacramento Valley Red Foxes – April 11, 2014. Presented by Dr. Ben Sacks

Dr. Sacks discusses research on Sierra Nevada red fox and the Sacramento Valley red fox. Historically, Sierra Nevada red fox were present throughout the subalpine zone of the Sierra Nevada range in California but over the last century, their abundance and distribution have declined dramatically. The Sacramento Valley red fox was recently shown to be a second native subspecies confined to the northern Central Valley. Dr. Sacks presents findings on biogeography, ecology, and conservation issues in the context of previous and ongoing research.

Video: Sierra Nevada and Sacramento Valley red fox. Photo by Dr. Ben Sacks

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.

Presentation Materials


Yellow Starthistle – March 17, 2014. Presented by Dr. Joseph DiTomaso

Dr. DiTomaso discusses the life history of yellow starthistle, an invasive weed, including the biology of the plant, why it is a problem, and how it affects the landscape. Dr. DiTomaso discusses management strategies including herbicides, burning, and hand removal and how these strategies can be best applied to minimize non-target species damage. Dr. DiTomaso includes an overview of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategies that can be used to address yellow starthistle.

Video: Yellow Starthistle. CDFW photo by Jeb Bjerke

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.


Mountain Yellow-Legged Frog – February 24, 2014. Presented by Dr. Vance Vredenburg

Dr. Vredenburg provides an overview of the natural history of this species. Dr. Vredenburg addresses past and current threats to this species, focusing on Chytrid fungus and his most recent research results on this topic.

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.


California’s Endemic Fishes – February 11, 2014. Presented by Dr. Peter Moyle

Dr. Moyle presents his research on how native fishes of California and the ecosystems on which they depend can persist into the future, given the growing impacts of human use of the planet and climate change. Dr. Moyle discusses the large data sets he has developed on the status, distribution, and ecology of native and non-native fishes of California. He has used these data to quantify the potential impacts of climate change on each species.

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.


Northern Spotted Owl and Barred Owl – December 17, 2013. Presented by Dr. Lowell Diller

Dr. Diller presents a two-part lecture. During the first half of the lecture, Dr. Diller focuses on northern spotted owl life history, including biology, habitat use and behavior. During the second half of the lecture, Dr. Diller focuses on barred owls and their interaction with northern spotted owls. Dr. Diller presents current scientific information on both species.

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.


Giant Gartersnake – October 30, 2013. Presented by Dr. Brian Halstead

Dr. Halstead is a Research Wildlife Biologist with the USGS. His research has focused on giant gartersnake habitat suitability and conservation in the Sacramento Valley. In this lecture, Dr. Halstead provides an overview of the life history of this species including habitat selection and use, threats, and management options.

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.


Pacific Fisher – October 24, 2013. Presented by  Dr. Mourad Gabriel

Dr. Mourad Gabriel is a wildlife disease ecologist whose research focus is to investigate and understand threats to wildlife of conservation concern. This lecture focuses on the recent proliferation of illegal marijuana cultivation in California and the impacts it is having on sensitive species, including the Pacific fisher.

CDFW STAFF – Get training credit for watching the video.


Get Credit for Watching (CDFW STAFF)

To receive a certificate for watching a training video, please e-mail margaret.mantor@wildlife.ca.gov. Please include in the e-mail:

  • Your full name
  • Your classification
  • Your Region/Division
  • The name of the video you watched
  • The date of viewing

***If you cannot watch videos online due to low bandwidth in some field offices, please e-mail margaret.mantor@wildlife.ca.gov

Training Certification

Training hours from the Conservation Lecture Series may be used towards The Wildlife Society (TWS) Category I of the Certified Wildlife Biologist Renewal/Professional Development Certificate Program (up to 8 hours). For more information, visit the links below:

The Wildlife Society logo
 

CDFW STAFF – Participants will receive a certificate from the Office of Training and Development for each lecture they attend and for recordings they watch. The Conservation Lecture Series is part of Permit Academy (this link is accessible to CDFW staff only).