Nature of Things Speaker Series

The Nature of Things is a science-based program for adults who want to expand their knowledge of the natural world. Most programs in the series include both a seminar and a field study, allowing participants to gain relevant background information before applying their new knowledge or skills out in the field. Our guest presenters include naturalists, rangers, photographers, authors and educators. If you have an interest in science and want to gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of the Sacramento region, its wildlife and history, join us for... The Nature of Things!

Ages 12 to adult, unless otherwise specified in program description

Program costs vary, depending on presenter, subject and number of seminar and field studies included.

Cancellation/Refund Policy: A 10% fee will apply to refunds for a cancellation made more than 48 hours prior to the event. No refunds will be given if cancellation is 48 hours or less before the event (or post event).

Upcoming programs are listed below. To ensure you receive notification about future Nature of Things programs, sign up for our e-newsletter.

Birds of Winter with Ed Harper

January 23, 2019

Three seminars and three field studies in January and February. NOTE: Field Studies are now full. We are still aceepting registrations for the Seminars Only.

Presenter: Ed Harper 


Program description: Whereas some of our birds such as swallows, flycatchers, and warblers do migrate south for the winter, many more birds flock to the Sacramento region to spend the winter. Cranes, ducks, geese, gulls, raptors, kinglets, and sparrows are just a few of the many representative groups residing here during the winter months. Whether you simply want to distinguish one sparrow species from another or seek greater help in learning the distinctive “churt” note of a Hermit Thrush, this course has broad appeal.  Anyone who has a serious interest in birds and enjoys their presence in our lives can profit from this class.

Speaker bio: Ed Harper is a retired mathematics professor from American River College in Sacramento. His interest in birds began during his early childhood while growing up in Montana. An excellent birder and photographer, he has traveled to every continent. He has photographed over 800 species of birds in North America and many more elsewhere. His exquisite photographs have appeared in many books and publications. Actively involved in birding, he is a past member of the Board for the Western Field Ornithologists as well as a past president of Sacramento Audubon Society.

An annual speaker at California’s Central Valley Birding Symposium, his lively and informative talks are in high demand from many birding festivals, community groups, and Audubon societies. Ed first started leading bird tours for Massachusetts Audubon Society in 1980. Presently, he leads many tours with his wife, Susan Scott, a biologist who teaches at Sacramento’s Cosumnes River College. Their company, Sandpiper Journeys, specializes in small groups with some of their favorite destinations being Montana and East Africa. 


Program dates:


   Wed., Jan. 23   7:00-8:30pm at Effie Yeaw Nature Center

   Wed., Jan. 30   7:00-8:30 pm at Effie Yeaw Nature Center
   Wed., Feb. 6   7:00-8:30 pm at Effie Yeaw Nature Center
   Sat., Jan. 26   8:00 am-noon at Ancil Hoffman Park

   Sat., Feb. 2    8:00 am-1:30 pm at Linden Raptor Route,             Linden in San Joaquin County

   Sat., Feb. 9   8:00 am- noon at Yolo Basin Wetlands off                I-80, Yolo Bypass


 All Programs- General Admission: $135
  Nature Center Member: $115
 Seminars Only- General Admission: $70
  Nature Center Member: $60


Field studies are full. We are still accepting registration for the Seminars Only. 

Register online below: 

Note ARNHA Member Discount on Dropdown Menu
Phone or Email


Additional program details:  

A moderate amount of walking will be required for most trips requiring appropriate footwear and clothing. Liquids, insect repellent, sunscreen, and snack food can make your outings much more pleasant.

Binoculars and a recent field guide to the birds such as The Sibley Guide to Birds (2nd printing) or the National Geographic Society Field Guide to Birds of North America, 7th Edition.  A very useful app for your phone is iBird PRO that can be downloaded from iTunes. Also, Sibley Birds is another good app.

Questions? Call us at (916) 489-4918 or email us. 




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