Course Catalog: Field Ecology And Natural History

At the request of one of our students I’m updating our college curriculum and creating a course catalog for our immersion programs.  This first section is our field ecology and natural history curriculum.

Economic Field Botany (3 credits) – Edible, medicinal and other useful plants of Maine and surrounding territories.
Aided by an instructor, students will identify and press or photograph specimens of wild plants in the field. They will then perform extensive background studies on the plants, including their botany, uses, preparations, nutritional content, medicinal properties and historical uses and lore. Students will experiment with edible plants in order to gain an intimate knowlege of them that goes beyond abstract information. The emphasis is on seasonally-available resources.

Courses: Spring, Summer, Fall

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Mammal Tracking And Behavior (3 credits)The natural history of the mammals of Maine and surrounding territories
Students will learn to locate, identify and interpret tracks and sign of the mammals of northern Maine and perform background studies on the habits and natural history of each. The selection of mammals studied is driven by sign identified in order to keep the curriculum tangible and practical.

Courses: Fall, Winter

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Barehand Meteorology (3 credits)Introduction to air masses, weather patterns, clouds and forecasting.
An introduction into understanding the weather, students will study the natural processes that create weather and keep a daily weather journal recording the weather and making observational forecasts.

Courses: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

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Field Astronomy (3 credits)Introduction to the stars; star lore, constellations and celestial navigation.
A survey of stars and the night sky visible to the naked eye. Students will identify and learn the lore of the stars and constellations, as well as use them to find directions and latitude.

Courses: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

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Field Icthyology (3 credits) Freshwater fish of Maine and surrounding territories; their biology, habits and economic importance.
A survey of freshwater fish: their natural history, habits and economic importance, as well as angling strategies.

Courses: Spring, Summer

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Field Ornithology (2 credits)Birds of Maine and surrounding territories. Identification, habits and song.
Field identification and natural history of common birds of Maine and surrounding territories.

Courses: Spring, Summer, Fall

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Forest Ecology (2 credits)The web of life in the northern forest.
A survey of the concepts of forest ecology as applied to the northern hardwood and boreal forest.

Courses: Spring, Summer, Fall

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Winter Ecology (2 credits) Plant and mammal adaptation to the frozen season.
A survey of the concepts of winter ecology and their effects on humans.

Courses: Spring, Summer, Fall

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Freshwater Ecology (2 credits)The ecology of stream, pond, river and lake.
A survey of the scientific principles of freshwater ecology and their field applications to the fisherman, forager, and bushcraft enthusiast.

Courses: Spring, Summer, Fall

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Traditional Ecological Knowledge (2 credits) Ecology as understook by indigenous cultures.
Examines the traditional ecological knowledge and resource management of the Cree compared and contrasted with the modern science of ecology.

Courses: Spring, Summer, Fall

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More specifics are available in our book First Person Ecology.

Courses:

Fall: Wilderness Bushcraft Semester (Yearlong Immersion)

Winter: Winter Bushcraft And Snowshoe Expedition (Yearlong Immersion)

Spring: Canoe Expedition Semester (Yearlong Immersion)

Summer: Journeyman Course (standalone immersion)

Courses

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • John Hout

    Timmmmmmmmmmmm, can’t wait to come bug you in Maine lol.. Hey I found a typo for you, do I get extra credit? missing an “l” in will, you have Students wil identify and learn.. I know I’m your hero :) haha
    John

    Field Astronomy (3 credits) – Introduction to the stars; star lore, constellations and celestial navigation.
    A survey of stars and the night sky visible to the naked eye. Students wil identify and learn the lore of the stars and constellations, as well as use them to find directions and latitude.

  • Thanks John. We’ve got plenty of space and you’re always welcome. Have you entered the Maine moose lottery?

 


 

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Typos, Etc.
Note: Anything that appears to be an error in spelling or grammar is actually the author’s clever use of the vernacular, and as such is not an error, but rather a carefully placed literary device that demonstrates his writing prowess.

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