At our February meeting, we’ll learn all about the mysterious lives of freshwater mussels. These organisms are a critical, but often overlooked, member of freshwater communities. They have complex and strange life cycles, and can reveal a lot about the health of aquatic ecosystems. In addition to our lecture, you can practice some identification techniques with specimens from the Cincinnati Museum Center zoology collection.
Mr. Fleece is an aquatic ecologist, restoration specialist, and consultant whose clients include state, federal, and local governments, hydroelectric utilities, watershed planning groups, military installations, and non-governmental organizations. He is one of Stantec’s freshwater ecosystem subject matter experts. Mr. Fleece is authorized by the Federal government to survey for listed fish and freshwater mussels, and conducts formal and informal consultation under Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act for an array of plants, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, mussels, and freshwater, marine, and anadromous fish. Mr. Fleece is also a restoration ecologist with 18 dam removals and multiple stream restoration projects to his credit. Much of his recent work has focused on incorporating the habitat requirements of listed fish and mussels into restoration design. He recently managed demolition of West Milton Dam on the Stillwater River in Ohio, a project targeting the federally endangered snuffbox mussel (Epioblasma triquetra).
Audubon programs are held on the third Monday of the month (not including January, July, August or December). We meet at 7:00 p.m. for light refreshments, with the program beginning at 7:30. We meet at the Winton Woods visitor center, located at 10245 Winton Road. To reach the visitor center from I-275, take the Winton Road exit, and go south. Just before the lake, turn right into the park. From the Ronald Reagan Highway, take the Winton Road North exit, and turn right into the park just after the lake.
Note that a Park District auto sticker is required – $3.00 daily or $10.00 annual for Hamilton County residents, or $5.00 daily or $14.00 annual for non-residents.