During this workshop we will explore the flora and fauna found in the oak and riparian ecosystems of Emandal (aka “heaven-on-earth”). Instructor Kate Marianchild will share her knowledge of the behaviors, social structures, anatomical marvels, and interrelationships of the non-human beings we will meet as we meander on Emandal’s trails. Using close-focusing binoculars, we will “ooh and aah” at gloriously magnified dragonflies, lizards, spiders, wildflowers, and other local denizens. We will look and listen deeply (sometimes tasting and smelling as well), and will sometimes sit quietly in “sit-spots” to become intimately acquainted with our multi-legged, winged, and rooted friends. We will continuously identify birds, butterflies, oaks, lichens, and other species throughout our time together. If we are lucky, we might even see foxes, coyotes, bears, mountain lions, bald eagles, or golden eagles.
The pace will be slow and we will rarely cover more than 1.5 miles in a day. However do realize that the footing is tricky along the river and certain risks, such as ticks, rattlesnakes, and poison oak, are inherent in any outdoor setting in California’s foothills.
During the Art Stay, participants will be welcome to use techniques such as drawing, writing, photographing, or storytelling to enhance their experience, but such artistic expressions will not be expected and art supplies will not be provided.
About the Instructor
Kate Marianchild is the author of Secrets of the Oak Woodlands: Plants and Animals among California’s Oaks. This award-winning bestseller, a classic of California nature writing, weaves scientific facts, stories, and humor into fascinating portraits of twenty-two plant and animal species and their interrelationships. Kate speaks throughout California and constantly deepens her connection with the natural world through observation, reading, and sharing experiences with other naturalists. In her free time she sings, swims, and watches everything that flies, runs, crawls, burrows, or blooms. For more information: http://www.katemarianchild.com/
Birding Binoculars -if you don’t already have some, please try to borrow or purchase them for class (Nikon’s Monarch 5’s are good). Out of This World in Mendocino carries them.
Supply Fee to Instructor:
Oak identification card ($8 including tax)
Secrets of the Oak Woodlands: Plants and Animals among California’s Oaks ($20 including tax).
“On our guided walks Kate imparted her incredible knowledge––of newts and woodrats, manzanitas and lichens, to name a few––in ways that excited and fascinated us. She encouraged us to look closely and listen to everything, no matter how small or quiet. Once, when we heard a cicada, she asked us to find it. Then, while we watched this intricate insect and its subtly moving parts (all greatly magnified through close-focusing binoculars), she explained what it was doing on the plant stem, how and why it was “singing,” and how it avoids overheating when it sings in the hottest part of the day. Being still enough to really pay attention, and then learning right then and there about what we were seeing, fed not only my heart, but my mind!” –– Mary Waters, Spring 2017
“During Kate’s Walking in Wonder classes a magical world unfolded right before my eyes. She explained intricate and very specific adaptations and relationships that plants, animals, and insects have formed for survival. Her enthusiasm and joy were infectious. Kate’s guided walks are a portal into the beauty surrounding us.” –– Susan Panofsky, Spring 2018
“Since taking Kate Marianchild’s Walking in Wonder classes, I have a new respect for the smallest creatures I see in the meadow and the forest. I now look up when I hear a bird call to see if it’s alone or with its mate, hoping to follow it with my eyes to a nest. If I flush a bird from the ground, I look for a nest hidden in a bush or a clump of grass. I know the difference between a white oak and a black oak and their idiosyncrasies and differences. Flowers, poison oak, oak galls. So many wonders! I want to do it all again.” –– Char Jacobs, Winter 2018