The North Carolina Natural Heritage Program and the North Carolina Association of Environmental Professionals (NCAEP) will hold a Rare Plant and Natural Community Identification workshop October 11, 2012. The field trip/workshop will be led by Michael Schafale, Ed Schwartzman, and Kimberly Israel of the Natural Heritage Program, and will highlight some of the natural communities and rare plants associated with the Southern Mountain region of Henderson and Transylvania Counties. This field trip is designed for environmental professionals, botanists, and students who are responsible for conducting environmental surveys. The registration fee is $85.
The mountain region of North Carolina is one of the most distinctive parts of the state, but has substantial biogeographic variation in both species and natural communities within it. This one-day workshop will examine natural communities characteristic of lower and moderate elevations in the upper French Broad River valley, near Hendersonville. We will include a look at rare plant species that are visible in the fall. The workshop will visit several sites, including one with characteristic upland natural communities, and one or two sites for rare wetland communities and their associated rare plants. We will discuss classification of the natural communities, including various oak forests, cove forests, rock outcrops, and mountain bogs, using the NC Natural Heritage Program’s Classification of Natural Communities of North Carolina (4th Approximation) and other classifications.
Please bring your copy of Classification of the Natural Communities of North Carolina (Third Approximation) by Schafale and Weakley. If you do not have a copy, one can be purchased from the North Carolina Natural Heritage Program for $15 at the workshop or you can download and print relevant portions for free at http://www.ncnhp.org/Images/Other%20Publications/class.pdf. We will discuss the newly released Fourth Approximation (Schafale 2012) and compare with the Third Approximation.
Please bring a lunch as we will not stop at a restaurant. The registration fee does not include meals.
Please wear appropriate field clothes and shoes and bring insect repellent, sunscreen, hat, and plenty of water. The field trip sites are known to harbor ticks, chiggers, and snakes. Bring a camera if you interested in photographing plant species and natural communities. Participants will not be allowed to collect plant or animal specimens. The field trips are planned rain or shine, so please plan and prepare accordingly. In the rare event of emergency cancellation or last minute updates, registrants will be contacted via email. coolers will be provided for drinks. Afternoon snacks will also be provided.
Workshop attendees will be transported by van from the meeting site in Hendersonville. Vans will leave promptly at 8:00 AM and return by 4:00 PM. The specific meeting site will be announced to registrants later. We will make break stops at service stations along the way.
Please register soon. Registration closes on October 4th. Space is limited.