Urban wildlife issues transcend political boundaries. Each urban environment tends to present their own unique challenges and opportunities. With this in mind, this fieldtrip will provide an opportunity to tour and engage with local wildlife biologists and professional educators at park systems surrounding Louisville Metro Areas as well as other private partnerships that promote wildlife biodiversity in the urban landscape. Main destinations of this trip include the Parkland at Floyd Fork and Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest. The Parklands is currently experiencing growth in the ecological education programming and installation of different native habitats but has not been immune to negative human-wildlife interactions from species like white-tailed deer, coyote, and bobcats. Currently they are in the process of planning management strategies with Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources (KDFWR) to help mitigate these issues while continuing their ecological enhancements. Bernheim Forest is 16,000 acres of private land just outside of the metro area who have over 270,000 visitors annually. Their goal is to be a nationally treasured leader in ecological stewardship that inspires exploration of our connection to nature. Discussions with their education and outreach team about how they accomplish their mission and time for a hike on-your-own to see the forest and their popular Forest Giants art exhibit. Exposure to some of the other urban wildlife cooperatives that KDFWR has ongoing will also occur and involve brief stops and discussions with the biologists leading those programs. Lunch and transportation will be provided.
Organizers: Matthew T. Springer, Department of Forestry and Natural Resources University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY; Richard Heilbrun, Texas Parks & Wildlife Department, San Antonio, TX
Supported by: Urban Wildlife Working Group