Thursday, March 12, 2009

Florida panther talk in Naples

Conservancy to host lectures on panthers, Everglades for members

Christina Cepero • • March 12, 2009

The Conservancy of Southwest Florida 2009 Speaker Series will feature “Panthers in Peril” this month and “The World of Marjory Stoneman Douglas” in April.

The ultimate in eco-entertainment and learning, the lectures incorporate expert insight and discussions regarding issues and treasures of Southwest Florida’s natural environment.

“Panthers in Peril” will be delivered by conservancy biologist David Shindle from 6 to 7 p.m. on March 18. Attendees will discover why only 80-100 of these elusive creatures remain during an enjoyable evening featuring one-of-a-kind photos from field research in Southwest Florida’s panther territory. Examples of tracking equipment will be provided by the Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge.

The next and final lecture will be “The World of Marjory Stoneman Douglas” by author and actress Janina Birtolo from 6 to 7 p.m. April 8. Known for her one-woman plays, Birtolo brings to life Marjory Stoneman Douglas, author of “The Everglades, River of Grass” and her quest to protect the Everglades.

Both lectures, which will take place at the conservancy campus at 1450 Merrihue Drive, off Goodlette-Frank Road at 14th Avenue North in Naples, are open to conservancy members. Memberships are available for $35. To become a member and register for the series, visit the conservancy Web site at Online registration is required as seating is limited. For more information, call 403-4207.

The Conservancy of Southwest Florida began in 1964 when community leaders came together to defeat a proposed “Road to Nowhere” and spearheaded the acquisition and protection of Rookery Bay.

The conservancy is a grassroots organization focused on the critical environmental issues of the Southwest Florida region. Partnering with like-minded organizations, the conservancy works to manage growth and protect area waters, land and wildlife. The Conservancy of Southwest Florida promotes sound environmental policies and practices based on solid scientific research while providing environmental education to residents and visitors. The Wildlife Rehabilitation Center treats more than 2,400 injured, sick and orphaned animals each year and releases about half back into their native habitats.

For information about the Conservancy of Southwest Florida, call 262-0304 or visit


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