Field Trips

Quick look:  

FT 1:  Allegheny River Canoe Float:  Tidioute to Tionesta

Departure: David L Lawrence Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Saturday, July 31, 7:30 AM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Saturday, July 31, 5 PM
$71.00 FEE includes: Breakfast, lunch, canoe, and transportation

LEADERS/ORGANIZERS:
Charles Bier, Senior Director, Conservation Science
Beth Meyer, Aquatic Ecologist
Western Pennsylvania conservancy

DESCRIPTION:
Much research and conservation work has involved the (upper) Allegheny River. Although dammed to the north and impeded by a series of lock and dams to the south, just north of Pittsburgh, this section of the river is free-flowing and supports some of the most biological rich aquatic environments in the state and region.

This will be a Casual float down 15-miles of the middle Allegheny River adjacent to the Allegheny National Forest.  This is a remote area within the High Allegheny Plateau ecoregion.  Several islands are part of the Allegheny River Islands Wilderness.  Water quality in this reach of the river is good and wildlife is plentiful.  Included are several species of fish and mussels that are considered rare or endangered, and the occasionally seen hellbender salamander. We will be stopping and observing/sampling aquatic organisms throughout the trip. This is an all day trip requiring only intermediate canoeing skills, but slow stretches involve continuous paddling.

EQUIPMENT AND ATTIRE:
Warm clothing, hat, gloves (optional) and rain gear. Wading footwear. Change of clothing.  Water bottle.

ITINERARY:
Group transportation will depart from the conference site at 7:30 a.m. and return approximately 6:30 p.m.  Time on the river is roughly 6.5 hours (9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.), including a lunch stop at an island.  Bag lunch and drinks will be provided.  An outfitter will provide canoes, life preservers and shuttle ride.


FT 2: Disturbance Ecology on the Allegheny Plateau—2-Day Overnight trip

Departure: David L Lawrence Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Saturday, July 31, 8 AM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Sunday, August 1, 5 PM
$185.00 FEE includes: Breakfast, lunch, transportation, and hotel

LEADERS/ORGANIZERS:
Alejandro Royo, and Robert P. Long
USDA Forest Service Northern Research Station

DESCRIPTION:
The forests of northwestern Pennsylvania are at an ecotone between mixed oak forests to the south and northern hardwood forests to the north.  The forests are largely second growth, originating from Industrial Revolution harvests between about 1890 and 1920. In recent decades, they have faced a complex suite of interacting disturbances, including white-tailed deer herbivory, changing fire regimes, windstorms, acid deposition, native and non-native invasive species, oil and gas development, and heated controversy over their appropriate management and use.  In addition, the region contains two noteworthy old-growth reserves. 

Ecologists would want to participate in this trip because they will be offered a very dense suite of research results from a team of researchers based in this forest.  Both short and long-term research will show how these disturbances have shaped these forests. We’ll visit mixed oak, Allegheny, and northern hardwood forests ranging in age from a few years to several centuries.  We’ll discuss ecological relationships, management challenges and responses to most of the disturbances mentioned above.

The web site to access some of these research studies and results is http://www.nrs.fs.fed.us/units/sustainingforests/

EQUIPMENT AND ATTIRE:
We recommend summer field clothes, with long pants recommended due to potential to walk through raspberry thickets.  We anticipate that most stops will have relatively short walks on level terrain, though our visit to the Hearts Content Scenic Natural Landmark will include a hike over level ground of up to a mile, and one stop may include a short but strenuous uphill climb.  At both of these stops, content will be accessible to those who chose not to take the strenuous option. We will be outdoors rain or shine, so folks should bring summer rain gear.

ITINERARY:
DAY ONE:
Pittsburgh, PA to Butler County, PA (or thereabouts). 
Topic: Emerald Ash Borer infestation, mortality patterns, and restoration

Butler County, PA to Kane, PA. 
Topics: Sugar maple decline and acid deposition;
               White-tailed deer herbivory, impacts, and recovery;
               Forest management and carbon sequestration;
               Forest regeneration treatments including herbicide application.

Kane, PA to Warren, PA for dinner and overnight. 
Possible side trip to show oil and gas development on the Allegheny National Forest. Dinner will feature a talk on the history of the region’s forests.

DAY TWO:
Warren, PA,  through Allegheny National Forest to Pittsburgh, PA.
Topics:    Hearts Content Scenic Natural Landmark
White-tailed deer herbivory and vegetative diversity – an 80-year record Beech bark disease complex
 Regenerating mixed oak forests – forest management, herbicide, fire, and herbivory
 Habitat selection by Avian Species of Concern in Appalachian Mixed Oak forests
 Managing the landscape of the Allegheny National Forest to connect reserve areas 


FT 3: Brownfield Blitzes: A Dialog with Inner city Pittsburgh neighborhoods Using Visual Approaches for Conserving Biodiversity, Engaging Local Communities, Sharing Knowledge, and Addressing Environmental Justice

Departure: David L Lawrence Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Saturday, July 31, 8:30 AM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Saturday, July 31, 5 PM
$51.00  FEE includes: Breakfast, lunch, transportation

This is not simply a chance to observe! We want people interested in digging in…literally, maybe…and providing information on the plants (native, cultivated and invasive), the animals (all taxa), the soils, the drainage, possible contaminants, and any other site data that could assist owners and the neighbors develop plans for re-use of the sites along this block. AND, as a bonus, we will be recording what takes place and showing the video at our mixer Tuesday evening at 7 p.m. Come and enjoy both events!

LEADERS/ORGANIZERS:
Gillian Bowser
Warner College of Natural Resources
Colorado State University
Harold Balbach
Installations Division
US Army ERDC
Moderator
Roberto Salguero-Gomez
Biology
The University of Pennsylvania
Speakers:    
Maureen Copeland
GTECH
Pittsburgh, PA
Jorge RamosCollege of Forest Resources
University of Washington
Ethell Vereen
University of Georgia


DESCRIPTION:
Climate change impacts ecosystem services and adds uncertainty on the delivery of these services to increasingly urban landscapes. How can urban neighborhoods understand, protect, and manage ecosystem services during times of ecological stress? What is the biodiversity of urban spaces and how can ecologists help neighborhoods become ecologically literate while promoting environmental stewardship? Join us on a unique field trip that focuses on building ecological literacy for inner-city residents using the urban fabric as a classroom. The field trip and dialog is in Larimer, an economically and ecologically distressed Pittsburgh neighborhood. The trip will explore ecosystem services including biodiversity, water, pollination, and food producing capabilities among urban brown fields. This will be an opportunity for ESA members to share their expertise through a casual bioblitz within urban community gardens, abandoned gas stations, and vacant lots. Growth Through Energy and Community Health (GTECH), a community-based organization focused on innovative solutions around environmental liabilities, will host ”a field hearing” to build dialog between the community, ESA and the Applied Ecology, Environmental Justice, Urban Ecology, Student section members. Students will develop videos from these dialogs for the Millennium Conference Workshop as a case-study focusing on community engagement, environmental justice and biodiversity. The field trip explores the Larimer neighborhood, interacts with community members, shares ecological knowledge through casual bioblitzes, and builds ecological literacy. Following the field trip, there will be an Ecoart demonstration organized by students and community members to share the neighborhood’s expression of the environment from local practitioners and invited guests.
Summary: Brownfield Bioblitz is a field trip with an urban community to share expertise, biodiversity, civic engagement, environmental justice, and ecosystem services. The trip is designed for the exchange of knowledge between inner-city residents and ecologists and will be used as a case study in a follow up special session.

To take a look at the site in Google Earth! Enter the address: 318 Larimer, Pittsburgh, PA. They conveniently have a 360 degree street view right at the corner of Larimer and Carver. Swivel to look down Larimer – the field trip sites are scattered down the block on both side of the street.

EQUIPMENT AND ATTIRE:
Hiking clothes, comfortable shoes, sunscreen, hat.


FT 4: Lake Pleasant Canoe Trip

Departure: David L Lawrence  Convention  Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Sunday, August 1, 7 AM   
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Sunday, August 1, 5:30 PM
$73.00 FEE includes: Breakfast, lunch, transportation, and canoes

LEADERS/ORGANIZERS:
Steve Grund, Botanist, WPC
Beth Meyer, Aquatic Ecologist, WPC
Western Pennsylvania Conservancy

DESCRIPTION:
Western Pennsylvania Conservancy has conducted many surveys of the Lake and surrounding wetlands. Regional universities have likewise conducted various research. WPC completed a five-year Flora of Lake Pleasant in 2007. Lake pleasant is somewhat famous for the recovery of an intact wooly mammoth  - see www.post-gazette.com/healthscience/20000228woolly2.asp

Most of Pennsylvania is unglaciated, and as a result there are few natural lakes. These lakes are popular as recreational resources, causing many ecosystem stresses. We will visit aptly named Lake Pleasant; the least spoiled of the nine lakes in western Pennsylvania, and the only one on which motorized boats are prohibited. Lake Pleasant has exceptionally healthy and diverse beds of submerged aquatic plants, with no Eurasian water-milfoil. A diversity of wetlands, including fens, border the lake, hosting a wide diversity of plants and animals, with minimal (but not negligible!) invasive species. After an overview of conservation efforts and challenges at Lake Pleasant, we will take to the lake in canoes with glass-bottomed buckets to view aquatic diversity and discuss lake ecology and management.

EQUIPMENT AND ATTIRE:
Wading & swimming clothing, rain gear if weather dictates, sunscreen and hats, water. Canoes will be provided by WPC and are housed on site. Portage to the lake will be necessary.

ITINERARY:
Group transportation will depart from the conference site at 7:00 a.m., arrive at Lake Pleasant WPC field station at 9:30 am, depart at 3:00pm and return to convention center approximately 5:30 p.m.  Hiking & interpretation time will be approximately 5 hours, time for lunch included.


FT 5: Management of Fallingwater and Bear Run Nature Reserve, Western Pennsylvania Conservancy

Departure: David L Lawrence Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Sunday, August 1, 7 AM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Sunday, August 1 5 PM
$64.00 FEE includes: Breakfast, lunch, transportation, ticket of Fallingwater property

This trip is not recommended for children under 10 years of age.

LEADERS/ORGANIZERS:
USDA Forest Service
Morgantown, WV

Jeff Wagner
Western Pennsylvania Conservancy

DESCRIPTION:
This trip will visit the world renowned house, Fallingwater, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright which epitimizes his blending of design with nature. The Fallingwater house, built for the Kaufman family, is cantilevered over Bear Run, a free flowing stream in western Pennsylvania’s Laurel Highlands. The Kaufman family donated the house and the core of Bear Run Nature Reserve to Western Pennsylvania Conservancy. The trip will include the guided house tour and visit to Bear Run Nature Reserve (BRNR). BRNR is managed to protect, conserve and restore land and water for the diversity of the region’s native plants, animals, and their ecosystems. Streams and watersheds, forests, and common and rare native species are the focus of management. BRNR is integral to biodiversity conservation in the Laurel Highlands and the mid-Appalachian region. Second-growth hardwood and hemlock forests, characteristic of this region, are the primary land cover in the reserve. Four high-gradient clear water streams flow through BRNR land. The reserve protects almost all of the Bear Run and Laurel Run drainages, as well as portions of seven other drainages, including the Youghiogheny River. The Bear Run and upper Lick Run drainages in BRNR are designated Biological Diversity Areas (BDA) due to the presence of species of state and federal concern. Management issues of BRNR that will be discussed include invasive species (insects, plants), unauthorized recreational use, trail maintenance, endangered species habitat maintenance, and protection of the unique scenic and architectural resources given thousands of annual visitors. The Reserve is located near Ohiopyle State Park where 14 miles of the Youghiogheny River Gorge passes through the heart of the park. The "Yough" provides some of the best whitewater boating in the Eastern U. S. as well as spectacular scenery. Surrounding Ohiopyle Falls is the Falls Day Use Area, the central point for the casual visitor. Time permitting we will stop at the Falls Day Use Area and view the Ohiopyle Falls.

EQUIPMENT AND ATTIRE:
We will be hiking on some of the BRNR hiking trails with mild to moderate slopes (total distance not more than a couple of miles). Raingear and insect repellent will be desirable. Temperatures will range from 60 F in the morning to mid-80s in the afternoon. Hiking boots are recommended but not mandatory. The house tour will include over 100 stone steps and hike of less than a mile. Children under 6 are not allowed on the house tour, Fallingwater has a family room available for children too young for the house tour.

ITINERARY:
Depart David Lawrence Convention Center and drive to BRNR/Fallingwater (1.5 hours).  Fallingwater visitor center, check-in, and break (1 hour), Tour house (1-3 groups, 2 hours), lunch (30 min -1 hr), hiking tour of BRNR with presentations by staff ( 2 hours), drive to Ohiopyle State Park Falls area (15 min), visit Falls, break (1 hour), return to Convention Center.


FT 6:  Youghiogheny River Gorge at Ohiopyle State Park

Departure: David L Lawrence Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Sunday, August 1, 7:30 AM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Sunday, August 1 4:30 PM
$57.00 FEE includes: Breakfast, lunch, transportation

LEADERS/ORGANIZERS:
Ephraim Zimmerman, Ecological Service Coordinator/Ecologist
Western Pennsylvania Conservancy

DESCRIPTION:
The vision for Ohiopyle State Park began with WPC’s purchase of Ferncliff in 1951. The park now encompasses about 19,000 acres centered on the Youghiogheny River in Southwestern Pennsylvania. This bedrock controlled river features unique scour communities that support numerous species of rare plants and the waterfalls and massive sandstone features on the slopes make this a spectacular and interesting trip in the Allegheny Mountain system of Pennsylvania.

We’ll hike the Great Gorge Trail, a 1.5-mile moderate hike. Shuttling from Ohiopyle, we’ll pick up the trail at Cucumber Falls, and follow the Youghiogheny River to the High Bridge, which will take us to Ferncliff Peninsula.  This part of the trail is known for its spring wildflowers but has interesting flora and features at all times of the year.  We will have plenty of time during the walk and lunch to discuss concepts of biodiversity conservation in the Laurel Highlands forests.

EQUIPMENT AND ATTIRE:
Hiking/trail shoes, rain gear if weather dictates, hats, sunblock, and water.

ITINERARY:
Group transportation will depart from the conference site at 7:30 a.m., arrive at Ohiopyle approximately 9:00 am, depart at 3:00pm and return to convention center approximately 4:30 p.m.  Hiking & interpretation time will be approximately 5 hours, time for lunch included.


FT 7:  Urban agriculture in action:  Greening blighted land and revitalizing communities. 

Departure: David L Lawrence Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Sunday, August 1, 8 AM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Sunday, August 1 5 PM
$48.00 FEE includes: Breakfast, lunch, transportation

LEADERS/ORGANIZERS:
Tara Pisani Gareau
Department of Entomology

Richard G. Smith
Department of Crop and Soil Sciences

DESCRIPTION:
Participants will learn about the motivation and efforts to reclaim abandoned and abused land and foster positive community development throughout the Pittsburgh area using agroecological practices.  The trip will include a visit to a renowned producer of grass-fed lamb, raised on reclaimed mine land. We will also visit several urban agriculture projects in the suburbs of Pittsburgh, where leaders from community-based organizations will talk about the process of engaging and mobilizing communities in the transformation of blighted land into productive green spaces. We will finish our trip with a tour of the culinary greenhouse at the Frick Art and Historical Center which supplies fresh produce to the museum’s café as well as to local restaurants and food markets.  Participants will have the opportunity to tour the museum as well!

EQUIPMENT AND ATTIRE:
Participants should bring a hat for sun protection and sturdy shoes for walking around the farms


FT 8: SEEDS Educational Outreach Initiative: Sharing ecological tools for biodiversity enhancement with future generations

Depart: David L. Lawrence Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Sunday, August 1, 8:30 AM
Return: David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Sunday, August 1, 4:30 PM
$20.00 FEE includes: Breakfast, lunch, transportation

LEADERS/ORGANIZERS:
Lorna M. Moreno Ortiz
Edif.2 Apt. A Coop. La Hacienda, Bayamón, PR 00956

Ana Elisa Pérez Quintero 
Urb. Dos Pinos, Calle Vesta #835, San Juan PR 00923

Beatriz Otero
Diana Guzmán
Miriam Toro Rosario

DESCRIPTION:
Urban ecosystems face serious ecological constraints such as urban sprawling and poor ecological planning. It is essential for scientists to engage with the public to take action on improving the ecological health of cities; and what better time than during the ESA meeting?  Our goal for this field trip is to connect Pittsburgh high school teachers and students with ESA members and carry out the change we need, especially by encouraging the next generation to lead in urban biodiversity enhancement efforts. A great example of efficient community participation is a vacant lot restoration project conducted by the City Charter High School in partnership with the Student Conservation Association (SCA).  Their project consists of rehabilitating a 9,642 sqft. lot in Pittsburgh’s Hill District, considered by many to be the cultural center of African-American life in Pittsburgh.  The restoration project has attracted a lot of attention in the community because of the improvements of a mural, clearing out litter, and planting raised bed gardens. During the field trip, instructors (SEEDS students and professional ecologists from ESA) will conduct a bioblitz with high school students and teachers, highlighting the importance of recognizing the biological richness of their lot and the value of long-term data.  Participants will carry out an experimental design that will generate plant and insect data and will serve as a model for future years.  Data obtained will be analyzed and a City High database will be started and maintained with ongoing participation from SEEDS. This will enable City High to collect long-term data on the progress of their project. By doing this, participants are contributing directly to general species knowledge of the area and have the opportunity to get involved in bigger networks.  In the future, the collected information could also serve as a guideline for the instructors to propose species that may enhance the ecological richness of the place.

EQUIPMENT & ATTIRE:
We recommend that participants dress comfortably and wear long pants, walking shoes, hat, and sunglasses. They should bring sunscreen, bug repellent, and drinking water. There is a chance that participants will get muddy and/or wet.


FT 9: Parks, Streams, and Urban Systems:  Successes and Challenges in Restoration (Companion to OOS 24 on Wed. 8 AM to 11:30 PM)

Departure: David L Lawrence Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Sunday, August 1, 1 PM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Sunday, August 1, 6 PM
$25.00 FEE includes: transportation, no lunch, BUT with dinner option paid for by each attendee

LEADERS/ORGANIZERS:
Bryan Dolney
Pittsburgh Park
Daniel J. Bain
University of Pittsburgh

Other partners who will/may be joining us for the fieldtrip include:
Erin Copeland and Phil Gruszka, Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy
Marion Sikora, University of Pittsburgh
Dick Wilford, City of Pittsburgh, Department of Public Works
Luke Stamper, Nine Mile Run Watershed Association
Mary Kostalos, Chatham University
Brenda Smith, Executive Director, Nine Mile Run Watershed Association
Mauve McBride, PhD Student, University of Vermont
Biohabitats Inc, representative tbd

DESCRIPTION:
Urban centers are haunted by a legacy of industrial activity, though few more than Pittsburgh.  The city dubbed “Hell with the lid off” in the late 1800s and decimated by the outsourcing of the steel industry in the 1970s is reinventing itself and pioneering the rehabilitation and restoration of the city and its natural systems.  While Pittsburgh was left a legacy of industrial impacts, it also inherited several large urban parks that provide a cornerstone for this renewal.  One of the centerpieces of this process is the restoration of Nine Mile Run (NMR), a $7.7 million dollar project completed in 2006. The restoration of Nine Mile Run grew out of a grass roots effort and the success of the project has been monitored by a team including professionals, academics, and volunteers.  Additional work, including the proposed day lighting of Four Mile Run is establishing Pittsburgh as a national leader in the restoration of urban systems.  This field trip will visit two of Pittsburgh’s premier parks, Schenley Park and Frick Park, and highlight the successes and challenges inherent in the rehabilitation of urban eco-systems.  The trip will begin in Schenley Park and examine Panther Hollow Lake and its role as a bell whether of success in local restoration. Then we will continue to over the ridge, visiting upland storm water management efforts en route and then descend into Frick Park and Nine Mile Run.  We will walk the restored reach, beginning at the Monongahela River and continuing upstream to the culvert that contains the stream through most of the watershed.  Representatives of local government, NGO’s, and scientists will join the group at key points throughout the trip to discuss their role and perspective on the restoration.  Following this portion of the field trip, participants will have the option of enjoying dinner in Regent Square, in Pittsburgh’s East End (requires a public bus trip back to the LCC) or taking the participants who choose to go back to DLLCC.  Please note each participant would be responsible for paying for their own dinner, this would not be covered in the field trip fee.

Additional information can be found at:

EQUIPMENT AND ATTIRE:
Hiking boots are strongly recommended but sneakers will do. Some of the hike will be in riparian/wetlands and waterproof boots would be best. A water bottle/sun screen is recommended. 
The trip will be along restored wetland/stream and some minor rocks climbing and stream crossing may be necessary. This trip would be classified as moderate to difficult.


FT  10: Hiking Frick Park

Departure: David L Lawrence  Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes,  Monday, August 2, 4 PM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Monday, August 2, 7 PM
$23.00 FEE includes: transportation, hiking tour, with option of dinner paid for by each attendee

LEADER/ORGANIZER:
Bryan Dolney
Technology Drive, Suite 300, Pittsburgh, PA 15219

DESCRIPTION:
For much of its history Pittsburgh has been the gritty and sooty backbone of American industry. Known as the, “steel city” Pittsburgh prospered as a manufacturing and industrial center, but industrial and manufacturing development came at the expense of the natural environment. Its parks and green spaces suffered similar fates of pollution and neglect.

In the 1970’s steel and industrial production in Pittsburgh slowed and a higher than average jobless rate and highly degraded natural systems were left. The city and the region responded by reinventing itself. Pittsburgh has become a great American success story. It has become a reinvigorated and revitalized city. A green transformation soon followed. An integral part of this transformation of Pittsburgh has been the revitalization and restoration of its parks and green spaces.

This fieldtrip(s) will give participants the opportunity to see the four great parks of Pittsburgh. Each fieldtrip will be a guided hike through one of Pittsburgh’s four regional parks, led by a local naturalist/ecologist. The focus will be on the local flora/fauna, ecology, restoration, and historical aspects of each park. The idea with this series of four hikes is to provide conference attendees the opportunity to visit a local park with a guided ecologist as a guide. We will provide the conference attendees a close and convenient outlet to a natural area while attending the conference. Providing a hike at the end of each day of the conference will be of benefit and interest to many of the conference attendees, all the parks are close and so will provide a quick chance for some recreation during the conference.

Each park is quite unique and so will each hike. The format/content of each hike will be quite similar to many guided hikes that state/national parks host. The difference with this series of hikes will be that more attention and emphasis will be placed on the ecology and biology of each of the sites. Each hike will be scripted to entertain, intrigue, and enrich each and everyone of the participants.  Following the hike the van could take participants back to DLLCC or to a local restaurant for dinner (please note each participant would be responsible for paying for their own dinner, which would not be covered in the field trip fee).

http://pittsburghparks.org/

EQUIPMENT AND ATTIRE:
No. this will be a casual hike on a trail. Insect repellent (off) and hiking maps will be provided. Some of the trails can be quite steep and rocky; however, all the trails could be described as easy to intermediate in difficulty.


FT  11: Steel City to Green City

Departure: David L Lawrence Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Tuesday, August 3, 9 AM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Tuesday, August 3, 3 PM
$45.00 FEE includes: Breakfast, lunch, transportation

LEADERS/ORGANIZERS:
Kelly Ogrodnik, LEED AP
Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens

Michael Embrescia, LEED AP
Green Building Alliance

Jenna Cramer, LEED AP
Green Building Alliance

DESCRIPTION:
Pittsburgh’s evolution from an industrial powerhouse to a leader in green innovation has given rise to a city ranked among the top ten US cities for LEED® certified buildings. Explore the many facets of Pittsburgh’s green built environment that have carried the sustainable revolution from its central downtown into its surrounding urban neighborhoods, cultural museums and universities. This tour of green buildings, green roofs and sustainable neighborhood development will reveal Pittsburgh’s transformation into a city that promotes the wise use of resources, healthier spaces for people to enjoy, and preservation of the natural environment.

The tour will include visits to:

  • August Wilson Center for African American Culture in the heart of Pittsburgh’s Cultural District, which is registered for LEED certification
  • 3 PNC Plaza, a mixed-use downtown skyscraper complete with a 2,380-square- foot living wall; owned by PNC, the “greenest bank in the business” with the most newly constructed LEED certified buildings
  • Sustainable neighborhood redevelopment in two of Pittsburgh’s eastern neighborhoods, Lawrenceville and East Liberty
  • Lunch in Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Garden’s Certified Green Restaurant®
  • Pacesetting Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, home to the most energy efficient conservatory in the world, and future site of a living building: The Center for Sustainable Landscapes
  • Innovative living roofs and architecture on Carnegie Mellon University’s campus, including the Robert L Preger Intelligent Workplace and the Solar Decathlon House

August Wilson Center:www.augustwilsoncenter.org
PNC Bank:content.pncmc.com/live/pnc/microsite/Green/
Lawrenceville Neighborhood: www.lawrencevillecorp.com
East Liberty Neighborhood:www.eastliberty.org
Phipps Conservatory:www.phipps.conservatory.org
Carnegie Mellon University:www.cmu.edu/greenpractices
Green Building Alliance:www.gbapgh.org
URA - Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh: www.ura.org
US Green Building Council & LEED: www.usgbc.org
Living Building Challenge:www.ilbi.org

EQUIPMENT AND ATTIRE:
The tour will be a combination walking and bus tour. Sneakers are recommended for the outdoor walking parts of the tour, including Carnegie Mellon University’s campus.


FT 12:  Green Convention Center in Action

Departure: David L Lawrence Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Tuesday, August 3, 11:45 AM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Tuesday, August 3, 1:00 PM
FREE: Must register for the tour

LEADER/ORGANIZER: Mark J. Leahy, General Manager of the David L Lawrence Convention Center

DESCRIPTION:
Mark J. Leahy, General Manager of the David L Lawrence Convention Center will conduct a behind the scenes tour of the David l Lawrence Convention Center. Come a see how a green convention center functions and see it in  action and learn how they have obtained their green status.


FT  13: Hiking Highland Park

Departure: David L Lawrence Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Tuesday, August 3, 4 PM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Tuesday, August 3, 7 PM
$20.00 FEE includes: transportation and hiking tour with option of dinner paid for by each attendee

LEADER/ORGANIZER:
Bryan Dolney
Technology Drive, Suite 300, Pittsburgh, PA 15219

DESCRIPTION:
For much of its history Pittsburgh has been the gritty and sooty backbone of American industry. Known as the, “steel city” Pittsburgh prospered as a manufacturing and industrial center, but industrial and manufacturing development came at the expense of the natural environment. Its parks and green spaces suffered similar fates of pollution and neglect.

In the 1970’s steel and industrial production in Pittsburgh slowed and a higher than average jobless rate and highly degraded natural systems were left. The city and the region responded by reinventing itself. Pittsburgh has become a great American success story. It has become a reinvigorated and revitalized city. A green transformation soon followed. An integral part of this transformation of Pittsburgh has been the revitalization and restoration of its parks and green spaces.

This fieldtrip(s) will give participants the opportunity to see the four great parks of Pittsburgh. Each fieldtrip will be a guided hike through one of Pittsburgh’s four regional parks, led by a local naturalist/ecologist. The focus will be on the local flora/fauna, ecology, restoration, and historical aspects of each park. The idea with this series of four hikes is to provide conference attendees the opportunity to visit a local park with a guided ecologist as a guide. We will provide the conference attendees a close and convenient outlet to a natural area while attending the conference. Providing a hike at the end of each day of the conference will be of benefit and interest to many of the conference attendees, all the parks are close and so will provide a quick chance for some recreation during the conference.

Each park is quite unique and so will each hike. The format/content of each hike will be quite similar to many guided hikes that state/national parks host. The difference with this series of hikes will be that more attention and emphasis will be placed on the ecology and biology of each of the sites. Each hike will be scripted to entertain, intrigue, and enrich each and every one of the participants.  Following the hike the van could take participants back to DLLCC or to a local restaurant for dinner (please note each participant would be responsible for paying for their own which would not be covered by the field trip fee).

http://pittsburghparks.org/

EQUIPMENT AND ATTIRE:
This will be a casual hike on a trail. Insect repellent (off) and hiking maps will be provided. Some of the trails can be quite steep and rocky; however, all the trails could be described as easy to intermediate in difficulty.


FT  14: Hiking Riverview Park

Departure: David L Lawrence Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Wednesday, August 4, 4 PM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Wednesday, August 4, 7 PM
$20.00 FEE includes: hiking tour with option of lunch paid by each attendee

LEADER/ORGANIZER:
Bryan Dolney
Technology Drive

DESCRIPTION:
For much of its history Pittsburgh has been the gritty and sooty backbone of American industry. Knownas the, “steel city” Pittsburgh prospered as a manufacturing and industrial center, but industrial and manufacturing development came at the expense of the natural environment. Its parks and green spaces suffered similar fates of pollution and neglect.

In the 1970’s steel and industrial production in Pittsburgh slowed and a higher than average jobless rate and highly degraded natural systems were left. The city and the region responded by reinventing itself. Pittsburgh has become a great American success story. It has become a reinvigorated and revitalized city. A green transformation soon followed. An integral part of this transformation of Pittsburgh has been the revitalization and restoration of its parks and green spaces.

This fieldtrip(s) will give participants the opportunity to see the four great parks of Pittsburgh. Each fieldtrip will be a guided hike through one of Pittsburgh’s four regional parks, led by a local naturalist/ecologist. The focus will be on the local flora/fauna, ecology, restoration, and historical aspects of each park. The idea with this series of four hikes is to provide conference attendees the opportunity to visit a local park with a guided ecologist as a guide. We will provide the conference attendees a close and convenient outlet to a natural area while attending the conference. Providing a hike at the end of each day of the conference will be of benefit and interest to many of the conference attendees, all the parks are close and so will provide a quick chance for some recreation during the conference.

Each park is quite unique and so will each hike. The format/content of each hike will be quite similar to many guided hikes that state/national parks host. The difference with this series of hikes will be that more attention and emphasis will be placed on the ecology and biology of each of the sites. Each hike will be scripted to entertain, intrigue, and enrich each and every one of the participants.  Following the hike the van could take participants back to DLLCC or to a local restaurant for dinner (please note each participant would be responsible for paying for their own dinner which would not be covered by the field trip fee).

http://pittsburghparks.org/

EQUIPMENT AND ATTIRE:
This will be a casual hike on a trail. Insect repellent (off) and hiking maps will be provided. Some of the trails can be quite steep and rocky; however, all the trails could be described as easy to intermediate in difficulty.


FT  15: Hiking Schenley Park

Departure: David L Lawrence  Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes , Thursday, August 5, 11:30 AM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Thursday, August 5, 2 PM
$20.00 FEE includes: hiking tour with option of lunch paid by each attendee

LEADER/ORGANIZER:
Bryan Dolney
Technology Drive

DESCRIPTION:
For much of its history Pittsburgh has been the gritty and sooty backbone of American industry. Known as the, “steel city” Pittsburgh prospered as a manufacturing and industrial center, but industrial and manufacturing development came at the expense of the natural environment. Its parks and green spaces suffered similar fates of pollution and neglect.

In the 1970’s steel and industrial production in Pittsburgh slowed and a higher than average jobless rate and highly degraded natural systems were left. The city and the region responded by reinventing itself. Pittsburgh has become a great American success story. It has become a reinvigorated and revitalized city. A green transformation soon followed. An integral part of this transformation of Pittsburgh has been the revitalization and restoration of its parks and green spaces.

This fieldtrip(s) will give participants the opportunity to see the four great parks of Pittsburgh. Each fieldtrip will be a guided hike through one of Pittsburgh’s four regional parks, led by a local naturalist/ecologist. The focus will be on the local flora/fauna, ecology, restoration, and historical aspects of each park. The idea with this series of four hikes is to provide conference attendees the opportunity to visit a local park with a guided ecologist as a guide. We will provide the conference attendees a close and convenient outlet to a natural area while attending the conference. Providing a hike at the end of each day of the conference will be of benefit and interest to many of the conference attendees, all the parks are close and so will provide a quick chance for some recreation during the conference.

Each park is quite unique and so will each hike. The format/content of each hike will be quite similar to many guided hikes that state/national parks host. The difference with this series of hikes will be that more attention and emphasis will be placed on the ecology and biology of each of the sites. Each hike will be scripted to entertain, intrigue, and enrich each and everyone of the participants.  Following the hike the van could take participants back to DLLCC or to a local restaurant for lunch (please note each participant would be responsible for paying for their own lunch which would not be covered by the field trip fee).

http://pittsburghparks.org/

EQUIPMENT AND ATTIRE:
This will be a casual hike on a trail. Insect repellent (off) and hiking maps will be provided. Some of the trails can be quite steep and rocky; however, all the trails could be described as easy to intermediate in difficulty.


WK 3: Using the National Vegetation Classification to Classify and Assess the Condition of  Ruderal, Plantation, and Natural Forest and Wetland Types: Two day event

Day One classroom session:
Saturday, July 31, 1 PM to 5 PM Classroom session:  David L Lawrence Convention Center,  Room 308
Day Two:  Bus Trip Departing David L Lawrence Convention Center,  East 10th Street Taxi Lanes, Sunday, August 1, 8 AM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Sunday, August 1, 5 PM
$60.00 FEE includes: Breakfast, lunch on day 2, transportation

LEADERS/ORGANIZERS:
Don Faber-Langendoen
College of Environmental Science and Forestry
State University of New York

Todd Todd Keeler-Wolf
Biogeographic Data Branch
California Department of Fish and Game

David Roberts
Department of Ecology
Montana State University

David Tart
Intermountain Region, Vegetation Management
U.S. Forest Service

DESCRIPTION:
This workshop covers the application of the National Vegetation Classification (NVC) to natural and semi-natural vegetation monitoring, and ecological condition assessments. Tracking the extent and condition of the nation’s forests and wetlands are key goals of many state and private organizations and federal agencies such as the US Forest Service, Army Corps of Engineers, Department of Defense, US Environmental Protection Agency, Fish and Wildlife Service and Natural Resource Conservation Service. This 1 ½ - day workshop provides an overview of how the NVC standard can address these needs (http://www.fgdc.gov/standards/projects/FGDC-standards-projects/vegetation). The workshop will be off-site at Fort Necessity National Battlefield, in Chalk Hill, PA. Beginning Saturday afternoon we review the classification and explore the criteria that guide the NVC hierarchy. We discuss the scope of the NVC, and illustrate how it facilitates comprehensive classification and mapping of managed areas. We discuss the role the NVC plays in condition assessments and the broad uses of vegetation plot data for classification and condition assessments, as illustrated by the Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program and the EPA’s National Wetland Condition Assessment. Day 2 explores the classification under different management conditions, including native old-growth forest, plantations, ruderal forests, old fields, and several wetlands. Instructors conduct training using keys, vegetation descriptions, and interpretation of monitoring plots. They discuss uses of the NVC for guiding condition assessments in different ecosystems. The instructors are ESA Vegetation Panel members with field assistance from National Park Service and Western Pennsylvania Conservancy ecologists.

The Fort Necessity visitor center is at:   www.nps.gov/fone/index.htm  

WK 8  Visual Communication of Ecological Knowledge: Photography as a Tool of Style and Substance.

Classroom session from 8am to 9am with bus pickup at 9am to return to convention center at 4pm

Departure: David L Lawrence Convention Center, East 10th Street Taxi Lanes ,Sunday, August 1, 8 AM
Return: David L Lawrence Convention Center, Sunday, August 1, 5 PM
$50.00 FEE includes: Breakfast, lunch, transportation

LEADERS/ORGANIZERS:
Molly G. Mehling
Zoology
Miami University

Dror Yaron
Robotics Institute, CREATE Lab
Carnegie Mellon University

DESCRIPTION:
Changes in the landscape of media and the surge of interest in sustainability have precipitated opportunities for ecologists to communicate more directly with diverse audiences. Imagery plays a prominent and powerful role in conveying the excitement of discovery and beauty of pattern inherent in science, its resulting knowledge and application. However, photography has not been fully embraced nor refined as a tool capable of dissolving the technical language barriers between stakeholders. The goals of this workshop are (1) to enhance your digital photography skills (bring your camera!), (2) to promote and facilitate collaboration between scientists and visual communicators, and (3) to discuss the value and limitations of ecological imagery. These goals will be addressed through presentations, a photo shoot, short-term collaborations with visual communicators, discussions and take-home materials. The workshop will begin at 8:00 AM at the convention center.  At 9:00 AM you will go offsite on a field trip to a local site of ecological restoration, during which hands-on exercises will allow participants to improve their technique and understanding of photography. Participants will be introduced to the GigaPan, a robot developed by NASA and Carnegie Mellon University that allows novice photographers to capture high-resolution panoramas using a point-n-shoot; applications of the GigaPan in research and education will be discussed. Participants will leave better equipped to employ photography as a tool to (1) engage via citizen science projects, inquiry-based education activities, natural history story-telling and to (2) share the broader impacts of research via diverse publications (photo exhibits, educational materials, EcoEd Digital Library) to various audiences.

Summary: Intended for ecologists interested in using photography or photographers as a communication medium, this workshop will take your photography skills up a notch while deepening your understanding of visual communication and its application in ecological research and education. A locally-developed photographic tool, the GigaPan, will be highlighted.


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