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history and nature

History and Nature Classes

bats

Bats of Santa Cruz County!

 

Enjoy an introduction to the world of bats. After an initial on-campus review of bat flight, prey location and capture, and a spectrum of special adaptations of successful bat behavior and biology, we will visit a prime viewing area for local bats.

No extensive or strenuous mobility is required. Please dress warmly and wear shoes suitable for walking on gradual dirt trails.

Participants should also bring at least one flashlight.

This program is suitable for participants for ages 8 and above.

Sat., August 6
3:00 - 9:00 pm
Room: 456 and Henry Cowell State Park in Felton
Register by June 6: $64
Register after June 6: $72


register online

 

Bruce Elliott - see bio below

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hikers

Wildlife of the Redwoods to the Sea

 

Join us for a day of moderate walking under the canopy of our beloved “Big Trees.” Enjoy forest streamside trails and flowering seaside dunes bordering the largest wetland complex on the Santa Cruz Mountain slope. We’ll explore wildlife and habitat relationships from the Redwood Forest of Butano Canyon to the Oceanside wetlands of Pescadero Marsh in San Mateo County. Sighting of birds, wildflowers, butterflies and other critters - including beavers - are possible in these wildlife-rich habitats. In the morning we will seek out wildlife and plant species on streamside trails and paths, then enjoy lunch at our oceanside picnic area! In the afternoon we will move to the marsh preserve.

Sat., August 21 - NEW DATE!
9:30 am - 4:30 pm
Location: Butano State Park (a map and directions will be provided)
Register by June 6: $64
Register after June 6: $72


register online

 

Bruce Elliott - see bio below

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Big Cats! Mountain Lions and Other Wild Cats in Western North America

 

Mountain lions continue to capture the attention of the California public. Due to recent sightings of these big cats in residential vicinities and instances of attacks on domestic livestock and pets, we find ourselves more curious about and connected to them. The last of the large predatory mammals in our region, mountain lions out-survived the grizzly bear and grey wolf. Their elusive behavior and finely-honed hunting skills contribute to their survival.

This one-day workshop presents an overview of the lion, but also the other feline species present in the Western portion of North America as significant factors in the ecology of our Western fauna. Bruce will discuss Bobcat, Lynx, Jaguar, Ocelot, as well as some now-extinct relatives that inhabited California and other portions of Western North America in earlier times.

Sat., Sept. 24
1 - 4 pm
Room: 405

Register by Sept. 12: $28
Register after Sept. 12: $32


register online

 

Bruce Elliott - see bio below

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The Aztec Civilization of Old Mexico

 

Nowhere near Santa Cruz county can one find a greater spectrum of wildlife species than in the Grasslands District of the Western San Joaquin Valley. A chain of Federal and State Wildlife refuges hosts a great assemblage of waterfowl, waders, birds of prey and a sizable population of sandhill cranes. During the day we should find a minimum of 50 bird species and among the highlights would be the preliminary courtship dancing of huge Sandhill Cranes and the good possibility of observing owls in streamside thickets. Some of the flocks of snow and cackling geese number in the thousands. There will also be the opportunity to enjoy views of tule elk, the largest of the mature deer in California, while we review the process of elk herd reintroduction and the management challenges presented by these large, powerful herd animals.

Sat., Nov. 5
1 - 4 pm
Room: 454

Register by Sept. 12: $28
Register after Sept. 12: $32


register online

 

Bruce Elliott - see bio below

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Winter Wildlife of the Central Valley

 

Nowhere near Santa Cruz county can one find a greater spectrum of wildlife species than in the Grasslands District of the Western San Joaquin Valley. A chain of Federal and State Wildlife refuges hosts a great assemblage of waterfowl, waders, birds of prey and a sizable population of sandhill cranes. During the day we should find a minimum of 50 bird species and among the highlights would be the preliminary courtship dancing of huge Sandhill Cranes and the good possibility of observing owls in streamside thickets. Some of the flocks of snow and cackling geese number in the thousands. There will also be the opportunity to enjoy views of tule elk, the largest of the mature deer in California, while we review the process of elk herd reintroduction and the management challenges presented by these large, powerful herd animals.

Bring a bag lunch, beverage and binoculars.

Students will receive a detailed map and informational letter from the instructor upon registration.

Sat., December 3
9 am - 4 pm
Offsite in Los Banos
Register by Sept. 12: $64
Register after Sept. 12: $72


register online

 

Bruce Elliott is a retired senior Biologist Supervisor for the California Dept. of Fish and Game. Bruce has conducted dozens of natural history themed presentations at Cabrillo College over the last 30 years.

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redwoods

The Forest of Nisene Marks State Park: Three Adventures w/ Sandy Lydon   

 

Adventure #3: Big Slide and Monte Vista Falls: Deep into the Aptos Canyon

This adventure will be the treat – the pay-off – because we will be going deep into the Aptos Canyon. And we have arranged to have a bit of a boost at the beginning, as we’ll be driven by vans up the Fire Road and dropped off near White’s Lagoon and then we’ll hike up and over China Ridge (there are the Chinese railroad workers again), down Big Slide to Aptos Creek and then upstream to see and become familiar with Monte Vista (AKA Five Finger) Falls. Then, after cavorting in the pool at the base of the falls (cavorting is optional), we’ll work our way (mostly) downhill along Aptos Creek back to where we parked our cars.

This adventure will make you appreciate just how hard people worked to get to those redwoods deep into Aptos Canyon.

Walking Distance: 9 miles - This is a tough hiking day, even with our initial ride in a van to our starting point. There are elevation changes, steep sections, creek crossings, and narrow bridges. We’ll also be a long way from civilization and assistance.

This program is suitable for participants aged 18 and above.

We will meet at the Porter Picnic Area, approximately 3 miles from Aptos Village. We will then load into the vans, be shuttled up to the top of China Ridge, and then walk, eventually, back to our cars. Participants will receive a letter & map with the details about the meeting location and are responsible to pay the day use fee of $10 per vehicle.

SPECIAL NOTE: After the printing of the catalog, we were advised by State Parks that the Aptos Creek Trail is broken and off-limits to hikers. We will still be able to hike into the far reaches of Aptos Creek, but will have to come back out the same way we hiked in. We will be arranging the vans that brought us into the park in the morning to pick us up at the drop-off location in late afternoon. However, this means that we’ll have to do some pretty formidable uphill hiking up Big Slide Trail once we leave Aptos Creek to get back to the vans. Having the vans will cut off ten miles from the round-trip hike.

For more information please see Sandy's website: http://www.sandylydon.com/adv_nisine2016.html

Sat., July 30 - CLASS FULL
8:30 am – 6 pm
Porter Picnic Area
Register by June 6:  $78
Register after June 6: $85

register online

 

Sandy Lydon is emeritus historian at Cabrillo College where he has taught for 46 years. He has researched and written widely on the rich immigration history of the Monterey Bay Region. An award-winning author and teacher, he has been described as Central California’s pre-eminent “standup historian.”

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Backyard Astronomer

 

night sky

Learn how to identify the stars and constellations seen in our local skies in this fun hands-on workshop. Using the Cabrillo planetarium and observatory you will see the wonders of the universe and learn about astronomy history, methods, equipment, and recent discoveries. Get a sense of distances to planets, stars and galaxies. Learn about Black holes, dark matter and the expanding universe.

Participants should dress warmly for outdoor observation at the observatory. In case of rain or fog, class will assemble in the planetarium.

This class is appropriate for students aged 10 to adult.

2 Fri., Nov. 11 & 18
6:30 - 9:30 pm
Room: 707

Register by Sept. 12: $58
Register after Sept. 12: $65

 

register online

 

Karl von Ahnen has been an amateur astronomer and telescope user since age 12. He served as lab instructor-assistant in the Cabrillo Astronomy Department for many years, and is the Director of the Fujitsu Planetarium at De Anza College, one of the largest school planetariums in the country.

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Bee-Friendly Garden - How to Create a Bee Sanctuary in Your Backyard

bees

Would you like to create a beautiful garden and also do your part to save the bees, all in one? A huge part of keeping honey bees healthy is to ensure they have the plants they need to survive available to them year round. Join Emily for this one-day workshop on bee-friendly gardening by starting the day at Cabrillo for a discussion and presentation on native plants, drought tolerant plants, perennial and annual flowering plants and basic bee-friendly landscape design. We’ll then break for lunch and make our way to Native Revival Nursery, just a few minutes from campus, where we will walk the grounds to see, smell and touch some recommended plants for your very own Bee Friendly Garden. This class helps us all save the bees and make our gardens more beautiful at the same time!

Students go home with a small bee-friendly garden starter kit from Native Revival Nursery, a plant list that breaks down the best bee plants by size, annual blooming schedule, place of origin and water needs.

Sat., Sept. 17
10 am - 2 pm
Room: 1605

Register by Sept. 12: $58
Register after Sept. 12: $65

plus $25 materials fee payable at registration

register online

 

Emily Bondor - see bio below

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Beekeeper Hive and Parasite Management

 

If you have an existing knowledge of beekeeping, and have a working hive, this class is perfect for you! Join Emily for this intermediate, 2-day class where she discusses keeping bees locally, starting new hives (package versus nucleus hive) and some of the different options for foundation. The class covers IPM approaches, options for tacking parasitic Varroa mites, and seasonal hive management techniques.

This class is open to students who have active beehives and a strong base knowledge of honeybees..

2 Sat., Oct. 1 & 8
10 am - 12 noon
Room: Horticulture 5001

Register by Sept. 12: $58
Register after Sept. 12: $65

plus $5 materials fee payable at registration

register online

 

Emily Bondor - see bio below

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Beekeeping Basics and Honeybee Biology

 

Whether you are interested in learning sustainable backyard beekeeping practices or just want a better understanding of how these delicate, intricate creatures benefit us and our planet, you will leave this class a-buzz with new energy!

This course covers hive structure, colony dynamics and delve into basic honeybee biology. We will discuss the history of beekeeping, from honey production to pollination contracts, and discuss current trends (and rifts) in colony management practices. Weather permitting, there will be a field trip to Emily's Apiary in Santa Cruz for a real-life "hive dive".

By the end of the course, students who are interested in obtaining their own hive will have a good working understanding of equipment, tools, management practices, bee biology, and how we can work together to support these very vital pollinators.

This class is appropriate for adults with little to no experience in keeping bees.

4 Sat., Oct. 15 - Nov. 5
10:00 - 11:30 am
Room: 1605

Register by Sept. 12: $68
Register after Sept. 12: $75

plus $5 materials fee payable at registration

register online

 

Emily Bondor is a bay area Beekeeper and Educator. Her expertise is in promoting responsible honeybee genetics and breeding queens from locally adapted genetic stock. She works in Napa Valley managing bee-hives and is currently pursuing Master Beekeeping Classes through the Honeybee Lab at UC Davis.

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Sea Otters: History, Habitat and Species Conservation

otter

Join Kim for an eye-opening photographic journey through sea otter history and habitat that reveals as much about humans as it does about the behaviors and antics of these fascinating creatures. Kim’s vibrant photographs combined with his dedicated research make for an informative and enlightening visual experience. Discover how human threats to sea otters have evolved over time, and what we can do at this critical point to improve the chances this threatened species will recover to sustainable numbers. The story will help us understand how our efforts to manage the ocean can sometimes have unintended consequences.

Sat. October 29
10 am - 12 noon
Room: 2502
Register by Sept. 12: $25
Register after Sept. 12: $28


register online

 

Kim Steinhardt, JD, is a former Administrative Law Judge who photographs and studies sea otters, presents popular illustrated talks, and regularly writes a column called The Sea Otter File, dealing with all things otter.  He also teaches law classes on legislative advocacy in the public interest, and leads natural and cultural history walks along the coast of Monterey Bay with a focus on ocean conservation issues and sea otters.

 

 

 

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