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Florida beachcombing topic of ‘Ding’ Shellabration lecture

By Staff | Feb 16, 2012

Blair and Dawn Witherington combed Florida’s 1,200 miles of coastline to compile their comprehensive guide to all things alive at the beach. Florida’s Living Beaches: A Guide for the Curious Beachcomber will be the touch point for their two special lectures starting at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Friday, March 2, at the “Ding” Darling Education Center.

The lectures are scheduled in conjunction with Sanibel Island’s weeklong Shellabration! 2012 festivities in honor of the 75th anniversary of the Sanibel Shell Fair.

Professional naturalists, the Witheringtons overlapped their biological research and graphic-scientific design experience to create an illustrated compendium of shore life. They have also written Florida’s Seashells: A Beachcomber’s Guide.

A book-signing will follow the Witheringtons’ lecture. Their book is available for purchase in the Refuge Nature Store, proceeds from which benefit refuge programs.

Admission is free to the event, which is sponsored by The Sanctuary Golf Club of Sanibel Island and “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge, as part of its 11-week Friday Afternoon Lecture Series.

Seating is limited and available on a first-come basis. Future events are listed below.

As usual, Wildlife Drive is closed on Friday, but visitors are welcome to enjoy the free Education Center and recreational opportunities at Tarpon Bay Explorers, the refuge’s official concessionaire located at its Tarpon Bay Recreation Area.

For more information on the lecture series, call 239-472-1100 ext. 241 or log on to www.dingdarlingsociety.org.


(*Book-signings will follow all starred presentations)

*March 2 Author Blair Witherington Florida’s Living Beaches

March 9 – Refuge Biologist Jeremy Conrad – Alligators

March 16 Dr. Dale Garolik Wading Birds

*March 23 Roger L. Reep & Robert K. Bonde – The Florida Manatee

March 30 Dennis Giardina The Importance of Native Snakes, featuring a live indigo snake

Apr. 6 – Apr. 6 Just Ducky! unveiling of new Duck Touch Screen computer with guest speakers decoy carver Jim Sprankle and Supervisory Refuge Ranger Toni Westland

As a non-profit 501(c)3 organization, DDWS works to support J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge’s mission of conservation, wildlife and habitat protection, research, and public education through charitable donations and Refuge Nature Shop proceeds.

To support DDWS and the refuge with a tax-deductible gift, visit www.dingdarlingsociety.org or contact Birgie Vertesch at 239-292-0566 or director@dingdarlingsociety.org .