Train to become a volunteer naturalist

The Tacoma Nature Center will host a series of hands-on trainings and workshops to train volunteer naturalists.

The programs will focus on the wildlife and plant ecology of the Pacific Northwest and train people to share that information with visitors to the nature center, the Tahoma Audubon Society’s Adriana Hess Park and other natural areas of Puget Sound.

The training consists of six workshops held at the center and taught by specialists and staff. The workshops will give you a broad knowledge of each subject area, and show you how to use a ready-to-go program kit to create an atmosphere of exploration and excitement for the natural world, said Michele Cardinaux of the nature center.

There are six required workshops.

Introduction to Interpretation: 6:30-8:45 p.m. Jan. 12 or 9:30-11:45 a.m. Jan. 16

Feathered Friends: 6-9 p.m. Jan. 26 or 9 a.m.-noon Jan. 30

Washington Wildlife: 6-9 p.m. Feb. 9

Forest Fun: 6-9 p.m. Feb. 23 or 9 a.m.-noon Feb. 27

Wetland Wonders: 6-9 p.m. March 9 or 9 a.m.-noon March 13

Tide pools: 4:30-7:30 p.m. March 23 at Titlow Beach

In addition to the required workshops, volunteers will have the opportunity to participate in elective workshops. These will be open to the public, but preference will be given to those who complete the training. The elective workshops include animal tracking, nature by kayak, marine mammals, geology of Puget Sound, neotropical birds, butterflies and dragonflies.

The fee for each workshop is $10. The Introduction to Interpretation workshop is a prerequisite and is free. You will receive a $20 discount if you register for all six workshops at once. Call the nature center at 253-591-6439 to sign up. Space is limited.

The News Tribune