Over the last seven years, I have been using various syllabi for my course titled, "The Natural History of the Olympic Peninsula". The following syllabus is the most recent one used during fall quarter of 2009.
Check the below links for information and images of the natural history of the Olympic Peninsula:
Instructor Qualifications: MS degrees with concentrations in Conservation Biology, Evolutionary Biology and Entomology as well as being an avid traveler and professional lecturer, photographer and naturalist.
Course Catalog Description: The Olympic Peninsula offers a staggering array of natural communities, habitats and species. In a very small area, the nature enthusiast can study remarkable geology, dramatic plant communities and their transitions, and hundreds of species of animals of all shapes and sizes. Within one short day, one can witness the grandeur of the alpine community, the lushness of the one of the wettest temperate rainforests in the world, and the dizzying biodiversity of the peninsula’s marine communities. The peninsula is truly a dramatic natural laboratory.
In this course, we will emphasize the natural history of the region with special emphasis on the plant and animal communities. While we will spend time studying the broad biodiversity of the area’s living things, some species will be explored in greater depth than others. We will study ecological perspectives of the natural residents of the peninsula and their interactions with the environment. We will also have the opportunity to see these species and interactions first hand in a full day field trip in to the national park. WashingtonState clock hours offered.
Course Objectives: To provide students with a greater appreciation for the natural history and biological diversity of the Olympic Peninsula.
Day One 23 Sep: Introductions
The Scenic Beauty of the Peninsula
What is Natural History?
Geology of the Peninsula
Day Two 30 Sep: Glacial History of the Peninsula
Refugia and Endemics
Day Three 07 Oct: Evolution & Ecology Primer
Plant Communities of the Peninsula –Eel Grass to the Alpine
Old Growth Structure
Day Four 14 Oct: Plant Survey – From Mosses to the Great Giants
Day Five 17 Oct: Saturday Field Trip #1 from 10 AM to sometime in the PM! (Details TBA)
Day Six 24 Oct: Saturday Field Trip #2 – Salt Creek and lowland forest communities
Day Seven 28 Oct: More on plants (if time is needed)
The Marine Community – From Algae to Invertebrates
The Animal Inhabitants of the Peninsula – Marine Mammals
Day Eight 04 Nov: More on the Animals
Terrestrial Invertebrates – Slugs, Snails, and Bugs!
Vertebrates – From Mountain Beavers to Roosevelt Elk!
Day Nine 18 Nov: More on Animals
Vertebrates Continued – the Salmon
Class Aves – Our Feathered Friends
Day Eleven 25 Nov: Field Trip #3 - At my home! Walk and talk on Land Stewardship and Conservation
The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. PeninsulaCollege is committed to providing accessibility to all students. Any student with special needs must complete a self-identification form available in the counseling office. This information will remain strictly confidential.