Photo credit: Kim McKown, NYSDEC

The sixth annual Long Island Natural History Conference will take place Friday through Saturday, March 23 through 24, with lectures Friday and Saturday in the Berkner auditorium at Brookhaven National Laboratory.

This year’s topics for discussion range from conservation of river otters, diamondback terrapins, coyotes and horseshoe crabs to “Long Island’s Last Rattlesnake” to “New York City’s Whales,” with workshops on citizen science and nature photography.

The conference is organized by the Long Island Nature Organization, founded in 2012 by East End naturalist Mike Bottini, writer and publisher James Monaco and teacher John Turner, who hope to build a web-based clearinghouse of information on Long Island’s natural environment.

In addition to the topics mentioned above, Kim McGown of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) will give a talk on Atlantic sturgeon and Steve Young of the New York State Natural Heritage Program will discuss Long Island’s Coastal Plain Ponds.

John Turner will give a talk on “Long Island’s Goatsuckers: Whip-poor-will, Chuck-will’s-widow, and Common Nighthawk.” Samantha Hoff of the DEC will discuss long-eared bats and Susan Booth-Binczik of the DEC will talk about the impact of deer on forest ecosystems.

Christopher Aigner of Ducks Unlimited will discuss restoration of brook trout populations and Dr. Sarah Karpanty of Virginia Tech will discuss red fox research on Fire Island.

More than thirty local sponsoring organizations will also be staffing booths with useful information for attendees.

Tickets for the three-day conference are $25 for students, $36 for LINO members and $40 for the general public, and are available online at

Beth Young
Beth Young is an award-winning local journalist who has been covering the East End since the 1990s. She began her career at the Sag Harbor Express and, after receiving her Masters from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, has reported for the Southampton Press, the East Hampton Press and the Times/Review Media Group. She founded the East End Beacon website in 2013, and a print edition in 2017. Beth was born and raised on the North Fork. In her spare time, she tinkers with bicycles, tries not to drown in the Peconic Bay and hopes to grow the perfect tomato. You can send her a message at

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