Meeting Webinar Archive

Friday, April 5th, 7:45pm
Galapagos, Darwin, and Biology’s Biggest Discovery
ECOC meeting 7:30-7:45pm

The Galapagos archipelago holds a special fascination for birders, naturalists, and biologists worldwide, in large part due to the endemic Darwin’s finches and how this unique group of birds shaped Charles Darwin’s perception of evolution. The mockingbirds of the same islands are less famous but similarly had a profound influence on Darwin’s thinking. Over 30 bird species, as well as the famous tortoises, marine and land iguanas, and much more are endemic to the archipelago, found nowhere else on Earth. Professor John Kricher, co-author of The Galapagos: A Natural History (2nd Edition), will discuss why the Galapagos Islands have become such an icon of evolutionary biology and why they remain one of the most popular tour destinations.

This event is made possible by a gift from club members Joanie and Tim Ingraham in memory of PEM trustee and former ECOC member Dorothy (“Dotty”) Addams Brown and co-hosted by PEM and supported by the Lowell Institute. All are welcome to attend!

View a recording of the April 05, 2024 meeting
including the ECOC meeting below.

Friday, March 8th, 7:45pm
Birding and Habitat Restoration on Plum Island
ECOC meeting 7:30-7:45pm
One of the most visited birding spots in the U.S. is right here in our backyard – Plum Island! David Moon, Mass Audubon North Shore’s Community Science and Coastal Resilience Manager, will share how the incredibly rich avian communities on and near Plum Island offer shifting opportunities for observing birds through the seasons. The diversity and scale of habitats, including barrier beaches, estuarine waterways, tidal flats, and salt marshes, among others, support this abundant diversity of birds. Moon will also discuss how some of these particularly vital habitats for resident and migratory birds are under threat from climate change and sea level rise, and the landscape-level ecological restoration efforts underway to respond to those threats.
This program is co-hosted by the Peabody Essex Museum and supported by the Lowell Institute.

View a recording of the March 08, 2024 meeting
including the ECOC meeting below.

Friday, February 9th, 7:45pm
Virtual Lecture: Watching a Penguin Revolution
ECOC meeting 7:30-7:45pm
As climate change has taken effect in Antarctica, scientists have been able to watch two species of penguins — Gentoos and Adelies — respond in real time. Senior Science Editor at The Cornell Lab of Ornithology Hugh Powell has traveled to Antarctica on three expeditions and followed scientists as they observed the changes to some of the largest and smallest Adelie Penguin colonies in the world. In this virtual lecture, Powell will explore what Antarctic penguins can tell us about human response to climate change and share the splendor of Antarctica and its birds through stunning images by nature photographer Chris Linder.
A brief meeting of the club will be held from 7:30-7:45 pm.

This program is co-hosted by the Peabody Essex Museum and supported by the Lowell Institute.

View a recording of the February 09, 2024 meeting
including the ECOC meeting below.

Friday, December 1, 2023, 7:45pm
The Everglades: Before and After
ECOC meeting 7:30-7:45pm

The Florida Everglades are the largest subtropical wilderness in the United States. Join Tom Tyning, naturalist, birder and Berkshire Community College professor of environmental science, on an exploration of the remarkable mix of physical and biological features that make the Everglades a unique ecosystem on Earth. Major efforts are now underway to restore the natural flow and quality of water to Everglades National Park. Tyning will briefly describe the history and ecological importance of this enormous “river of grass” and highlight some of the Everglades’ 360 species of birds, as well as reptiles, insects and wildflowers.

This event is co-hosted by the Peabody Essex Museum and supported by the Lowell Institute.

View a recording of the December 01, 2023 meeting
including the ECOC meeting below.

Friday, November 10, 2023, 7:45pm
Bicycling, Birding, and #BLM Across America in a Summer of Chaos
ECOC meeting 7:30-7:45pm

Through vivid photographs and videos, Dr. Scott V. Edwards, professor and curator of ornithology at Harvard University, brings us along on his 76-day, 3,800-mile bicycle trek across the United States in the summer of 2020, when the world was leveled by a pandemic and outraged by the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and others. As he recollects riding through varied landscapes and communities with “Black Lives Matter” signs affixed to his bicycle, Edwards will reflect upon the people, landscapes and birds that he encountered, and convey the challenges, generosity and hope that inspired and surprised him throughout his journey. His two-wheeled story is a clarion call to people from all walks of life to enjoy the open road, make connections across divides and help break down stereotypes attached to people of color in the United States – all with binoculars in hand.

This lecture was made possible by a generous gift from The Echo Charitable Foundation. It is co-sponsored by the PEM.

View a recording of the November 10, 2023 meeting
including the ECOC meeting below.

Friday, Feb. 3, 2023, 7:45pm
Taiwan: Gateway to Asian Birding
ECOC meeting 7:30-7:45pm

Join expert birder and bird photographer Jared Keyes for a virtual exploration of Taiwan and its wildlife. This mountainous island nation is home to more than 650 species of birds. Keyes will explain what makes Taiwan such a good starting point for birding in Asia as he shares highlights from traveling and birding in the country over the past 40 years. Co-sponsored by PEM.

About the Presenter:

Jared Keyes is a Massachusetts native and lifelong birder. He operates an educational bird gallery on Facebook and Instagram with over 200k followers, publishing content concurrently in Portuguese, Spanish and English with a goal of linking people throughout the Americas through their shared birds and shared love of birds. Jared is a board member of the Vermont Center for Ecostudies, sits on the advisory board of Mass Audubon and leads field trips for ECOC, primarily on Cape Ann.

View a recording of the February 03, 2023 meeting
including the ECOC meeting below.

Friday, Dec. 9, 2022 | 7:45 pm
The Nature of Oaks with Doug Tallamy
ECOC meeting 7:30-7:45pm

Scary headlines about the decline of the natural world that serves as our life support have spurred homeowners across the country to take action by planting natives that will help reverse this trend. No plant will achieve this faster than one of our 91 species of oaks. Oaks support more species of animals, sequester more carbon, protect watersheds, and nourish soil communities better than any other plant genus in North America. Dr. Doug Tallamy, author of The Nature of Oaks (2021), will discuss these roles by following the many fascinating things that are happening on the oaks in his yard each month of the year. His hope is to inspire people to plant and protect these vital, majestic, and life-giving trees. This event is made possible by a generous gift from The Echo Charitable Foundation. Co-sponsored by PEM

View a recording of the December 09, 2022 meeting
including the ECOC meeting below.

Friday, November 4 | 7:45 pm
Sound as Enrichment for Birds and Other Animals

Zoos can expose the disconnect between humans and other species by displaying the imbalance between visitors seeking entertainment and animals suffering from a lack of meaningful interactions. Dr. Rébecca Kleinberger will present her collaborations with zoos, wildlife experts, and preservation centers to benefit animals in managed care, using technology — specifically sound.

These interventions range from “Joy Branch,” an ergonomic interface that allows a Macaw to control his sonic environment, to an incubator that maintains vocal interaction between bird parents and eggs during artificial incubation, to an acoustic monitoring system for real-time classification of giant panda vocalization. Through these examples, this talk proposes insights and principles to help re-envision zoos of the future, with a focus on sound, for the benefit of the animals and their wellbeing. Co-sponsored by PEM.

View a recording of the November 04, 2022 meeting below.

Friday, Sept. 23, 2022 | 7:45 pm
The Once and Future Salt Marsh

Find out about The Once and Future Salt Marsh exhibit, an art and science collaboration exploring the beauty and fragility of the North Shore’s Great Marsh.

The artists behind this project, Susan Quateman and Leslie Bartlett, will share their artwork and stories of three species featured in the exhibit that call the marsh “home” — Saltmarsh sparrow, Rainbow smelt and Fiddler crab. The artists will be joined by project collaborator and salt marsh expert Dr. Robert Buchsbaum. Currently on view at 3 locales at the Parker River Wildlife Refuge on Plum Island, the exhibit highlights the effects of climate change on this vital regional ecosystem. Co-sponsored by PEM.

View a recording of the September 23, 2022 meeting below.

Friday, April 1, 2022 – 7:45pm
The Bald Eagle: America’s Bird
     There is perhaps no species more misunderstood than the bald eagle – for centuries, Americans have celebrated it as “majestic” and “noble,” yet savaged the living bird behind their national symbol, pushing the eagle to the brink of extinction not once, but twice.
     Jack E. Davis, professor of environmental history at the University of Florida and Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Gulf: An American Sea, will share the panoramic history of the bird and the icon, combining natural and cultural history to create a more complete picture of our national symbol and, in turn, America’s relationship to the environment. Davis’s presentation is based on his highly-anticipated new book The Bald Eagle: The Improbable Journey of America’s Bird (March, 2022).

Cosponsored by the Peabody Essex Museum.

View a recording of the April 01, 2022 meeting below.

Fri., Feb. 4, 2022, 7:45pm
Cities that Love Birds: Planning for Bird-Friendly and Biophilic Cities

What if we design and plan cities with birds in mind? What would a bird-friendly city look like and feel like?

Timothy Beatley, a professor of Sustainable Communities at the School of Architecture at the Univ. of Virginia, will present the ideas and findings in his new book The Bird-Friendly City (Island Press, 2020).

Beatley, a longtime advocate for intertwining the built and natural environments, will take us on a global tour of cities that are reinventing the status quo with birds in mind. He will also place urban bird conservation efforts in the larger context of the global movement towards Biophilic Cities, cities that put nature at the center of their design and planning and that recognize the innate need for human connection with other species and the natural world. Cosponsored by PEM

View a recording of the February 04, 2022 meeting below.

Fri., Dec. 3, 2021, 7:45 pm
The Great Animal Orchestra

Dr. Bernie Krause – soundscape ecologist, musician, and author – presents an intimate perspective on the history and creative process behind The Great Animal Orchestra: Bernie Krause and United Visual Artists, an immersive exhibition on view at PEM (11.20.21 – 5.22.22) in collaboration with the Fondation Cartier. This installation features original recordings of natural soundscapes – marine and terrestrial – from rare and threatened habitats, emphasizing what they sounded like in a healthy state when they were originally recorded. Well over 50% of the soundscapes recorded by Krause since he began this odyssey in 1968 come from habitats now altogether silent or so compromised from human endeavor that they can no longer be heard in anything close to their original voice.

This program is made possible by a generous gift from Tim and Joanie Ingraham in memory of PEM Trustee and longtime club member Dorothy (“Dotty”) Addams Brown and also supported by the Lowell Institute.

View a recording of the December 03, 2021 meeting below.

Fri., Nov. 5, 7:45 pm
Tracking the Trickster: interaction among ravens, wolves and people in Yellowstone

Ravens are known to scavenge from wolves and people, but the degree to which they exploit these and other sources of food has not been studied in detail. In this virtual program, renowned corvid expert Dr. John Marzluff, professor of wildlife science at Univ. of Washington highlights the intriguing and highly intelligent nature of ravens, then shares findings from his latest research in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, where he is co-leading a study on ravens. Marzluff will describe the movements and activities of ravens in Yellowstone and relate these to wolf- and human-provisioned food. Co-sponsored by PEM. 

This program is made possible by a generous gift from The Echo Charitable Foundation.

View a recording of the November 05, 2021 meeting below.

Friday, April 2, 7:45 pm
Free webinar: Insects for Birders
Plus ECOC meeting, 7:30-7:45 pm

Pick any scene from the drama of birds: the grace and force of flight, the audacity of courtship, even the fervor of foraging. Find it as well among insects – usually acted out just a few feet away. In this live virtual program, Vermont field biologist and writer Bryan Pfeiffer will use vivid images and practical tips to persuade you to start aiming your binoculars toward butterflies, dragonflies, fireflies, tiger beetles and other glittering insects, which E. O. Wilson calls “the little things that run the world.”  Co-sponsored by PEM. 

Also from Bryan Pfeiffer:

A Tribute to the Field Guide
Resources for Learning Nature from Books — Not App

View a recording of the April 02, 2021 meeting below.

Friday, March 5, 7:45 pm
Free webinar: Ospreys – The Revival of a Global Raptor
Plus ECOC meeting, 7:30-7:45 pm

The past 50 years have seen an extraordinary resurgence in Osprey numbers globally – from the Chesapeake to Scotland and from Finland to Massachusetts. Alan Poole, associate at Cornell Lab of Ornithology and author of a recent book on the species (Ospreys: the revival of a global raptor, 2019) will share this good-news story via a live virtual program. Enjoy dazzling looks at some of the places where Ospreys are found and hear about a few of the colorful characters who have helped make this species’ revival possible. Part travelogue, part biography, part scientific detective story: this talk will bring us up to date on one of our best-loved birds of prey. Co-sponsored by PEM.           

View a recording of the March 05, 2021 meeting below.

Fri., Dec. 4, 7:45 pm
Birding Southeastern Arizona
Plus ECOC meeting, 7:30-7:45 pm
Free webinar; Register in advance for this webinar at:

Has Covid-19 dashed your travel plans? Join club member Jared Keyes, a lifelong birder and expert bird photographer for a virtual birding tour of Arizona’s remarkable Madrean Sky Islands archipelago. Keyes will introduce us to a number of the birds found in this biodiversity hotspot with captivating images and sound recordings. To whet your appetite, check out his gallery on Facebook or Instagram: @jskbirds. Cosponsored by PEM.

View a recording of the December 04, 2020 meeting below.

Friday, November 13, 7:45 pm
Owl Quest
Plus ECOC meeting, 7:30-7:45 pm

Come explore North America’s family of owls with Marcia and Mark Wilson of “Eyes on Owls.” A fast paced slide show will introduce you to all 19 species of owls that nest on the continent north of Mexico, from the tiny Elf Owl to the giant Great Gray Owl.

Next meet six species of owls up close, live streaming to you. A hooting (and tooting) lesson wraps up the owl fun – in a program that will appeal to the diehard lister and beginning birder alike. Post your owl questions during the program for the Wilsons to address during the Q&A. Copies of Mark Wilson’s award-winning book Owling: Enter the World of the Mysterious Birds of the Night (2019) will be available, signed and mailed directly from him to you. (Photo by Mark Wilson,)

This event is made possible by a generous donation from Joanie and Tim Ingraham made in memory of beloved ECOC member Dotty Brown. Cosponsored by PEM.

View a recording of the November 13, 2020 meeting below.

Friday, September 25, 2020 – 7:45 pm
Treasure Islands: Essex County Islands and Birds
Plus ECOC meeting, 7:30-7:45 pm

Join renowned naturalist, conservationist and author Chris Leahy in this live virtual program to discover how local offshore islands are havens for resident and migratory birds alike.

 The Essex County Coastal Bird Islands Important Bird Area (IBA) comprises more than 50 islands, ranging in size from small rocky “skerries” to the well-wooded 83-acre Great Misery Island. These sites provide nesting and wintering habitat for a variety of interesting bird species, from the recently arrived American Oystercatcher to colonies that include rare wading birds and denizens of rocky shores such as Harlequin Duck and Purple Sandpiper. Leahy will describe results of recent multi-year surveys of these islands by Mass Audubon and Mass Fish & Wildlife, and speculate on the presence of as yet unconfirmed island nesters such as Manx Shearwater and Black Guillemot. Cosponsored by PEM.

View a recording of the September 25, 2020 meeting below.

Friday, May 29, 2020 – 7:45 pm
There’s an App for That?? Computer and Smartphone Birding
Plus ECOC meeting, 7:30-7:45 pm

Millions of applications (apps) are available for both Apple and Android smartphones, but which ones will really make a difference in your birding and naturalizing? And what about websites?

Mark Faherty, bird ecologist and Science Coordinator at Mass Audubon’s Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary, gives us the rundown on the latest and greatest apps for birding, ranging from digital field guides (iBird, Sibley, etc.) to eBird and Merlin and international apps.

After starting with an overview of eBird, Cornell’s bird sighting database, Faherty will then demonstrate apps you can use to find birds in your area, help you plan a trip to a foreign destination, and even a great one for expediting learning bird songs. He’ll also touch on the best traffic, weather, tide, and food-finding apps for getting yourself around and fed on your birding trips! Co-sponsored by PEM.

View a recording of the May 29, 2020 meeting below.