FARMINGTON — Western Maine Audubon’s first talk of the fall season will be by Matthew Chatfield, speaking on amphibians and reptiles native to Maine. The talk will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 13, in the North Dining Hall, University of Maine at Farmington. It is free and open to the public.
Chatfield writes, “We share our forests, meadows and backyards with 34 species of frogs, salamanders, snakes and turtles. This talk will present an up-close and personal view of all these amazing creatures, focusing on their natural history and ecology. Come and join us as we explore the beautiful and reclusive amphibians and reptiles that call Maine home.”
Chatfield is an associate professor of conservation biology at Unity College. He earned his doctorate in ecology and evolutionary biology from the University of Michigan.
He subsequently worked as a postdoctoral researcher and, later, as a visiting and research assistant professor at Tulane University in Louisiana. With interests in threatened and endangered species, especially amphibians and reptiles, he has worked on such broad-ranging issues as habitat destruction, climate change and amphibian disease.
He resides in Belfast and, when not teaching or conducting research, he is engaged in hiking, camping, birdwatching and being outdoors.
Jack Duteau, 9, from Auburn, shows off one of the more than 20 frogs he and his friends caught at Pettengill Park in Auburn. “We caught a turtle earlier too,” said Duteau. “It was a painted turtle.”