Science Saturdays


Science Saturday at the LBIF tackles today’s most pressing scientific, environmental, and sustainability issues that directly affect our shore community and the Barnegat Bay. Science Saturdays are interactive and informative hands-on presentations in an informal atmosphere.


Dates: Ongoing starting January 30, 2021. Check back soon for Fall 2021!

Time: 11:00am – 12:00pm

Fee: Via Zoom ONLY – $5, *****Free to LBIF Members & “Friends of the Foundation”

***** NOTE: Members & Friends should contact Emily, LBIF Programming Coordinator at, Monday – Friday, 9:00am – 4:00pm for the free admission promo code BEFORE the Saturday presentation. Staff is not available to help troubleshoot technical issues on Saturday mornings. If you do experience issues please email us and we can send you the recorded presentation link to view later.*****


January 30: Terrapins of Barnegat Bay- Stories of Survival
Presenter: Dr. John Wnek

The program this time will talk about threats to local diamondback terrapins including: crossing roadways, crab pot captures, loss of nesting habitat and the illegal pet trade. We will tell the story of “Bayley”, a local female diamondback terrapin that was part of the pet trade and returned back to New Jersey where we conducted health assessments and are developing a plan to return her back to the wild where she was taken. We will discuss ways that we are reducing road encounters, improving nesting habitat and promoting strategies to reduce terrapins being captured in crab pot. We have some actions that people along the coast can take to ensure the survival of terrapins. We will also be discussing the conservation efforts of some of our local partners throughout Barnegat Bay.

February 6: What the Locals Know About Flooding on the Coast
Presenter: Vanessa Dornisch, Jacques Cousteau National Estuarine Research Reserve

Are things really worse than 25, 50, 75 years ago? Visitor or resident, flooding will impact your time at the shore. This session that contains both local knowledge and the science behind what is happening, will separate “scare talk” and “reality”. In partnership with government agencies and other organizations, New Jersey’s coastal communities are working to become more resilient to coastal hazards like flooding, storms, and sea level rise. Learn about why and how coastal flooding occurs, what is being done to prepare and adapt, and steps residents can take to help increase their communities’ resilience to coastal hazards.

February 13: Exploring the JC NERR and Great Bay, Mullica River Estuary
Presenter: Kaitlin Gannon, The Jacques Cousteau National Estuarine Research Reserve

The Jacques Cousteau National Estuarine Research Reserve (JC NERR) is one of the 29 National Estuarine Research Reserves created to promote the responsible use and management of the nation’s estuaries through a program combining scientific research, education, and stewardship. In this presentation, we will discuss the variety of terrestrial, wetland and aquatic habitats within the Reserve as well as current research, education, and stewardship efforts.

February 20: The Spotted Lanternfly
Presenter: Richard J. Buckley, Director of Rutgers Plant Diagnostic Laboratory

Spotted lanternfly (SLF) is an invasive insect native to China, India, and Vietnam, that threatens U.S. agricultural, logging, and tourism industries. First detected in Berks County, PA in 2014, the pest demonstrated its detrimental impact upon plant growth and fruit production as its populations exponentially increased and spread. First confirmed in New Jersey in 2018, the spotted lanternfly has since been recorded in all 21 counties. The highest populations of the insect persist in the counties closer to Pennsylvania, but we expect to see significant population growth in most areas of NJ in the coming years. Find out how to recognize the insect when it moves into your area and learn what you can do to help minimize the threat.

February 27: Coyotes of New Jersey
Presenters: Kathleen Kerwin, M.S. & Chris Crosby, Ph.D. student

Coyotes arrived in New Jersey about 80 years ago and can now be found in almost every town across the state. Over the past 2 years, coyotes have immigrated to Barnegat Light, reproduced, and are dispersing across Long Beach Island. In this Science Saturday seminar, Rutgers University Ph.D. student, Chris Crosby, and Rutgers Wildlife Conservation and Management Program Coordinator, Kathleen Kerwin, will provide some history of eastern coyotes, a background in coyote ecology and behavior, and important guidance for avoiding negative human-coyote interactions

March 6: An Inside Look at How Our Fish Are Being Sustainably Managed
Presenter: Dr. Douglas Zemeckis, Assistant Professor, Rutgers Cooperative Extension

The fish in the bay and ocean are part of a fragile ecosystem, and they also provide fun and profit for recreational and commercial industries. In this talk, Dr. Douglas Zemeckis, County Agent III (Assistant Professor), with Rutgers Cooperative Extension will explore the challenges in sustainably managing our marine resources in support of the fishing and tourism industries, and the health of our marine ecosystems.

March 13: 8 Steps to an LBI-Friendly Yard
Presenters: Karen Walzer, Public Outreach Coordinator for the Barnegat Bay Partnership + Emily McGuckin, New Jersey Watershed Ambassador for the Barnegat Bay Partnership

A garden on a barrier island presents some challenges and but being friendly to nature can present some great rewards too. Native beauty and “doing the right thing” can be part of a garden that reflects your personality. You will learn how and be given some great online material to help.


March 20: Understanding the Value & Beauty of a Living Shoreline
Presenter: Joe Guastella, Rutgers Certified Rain Garden Professional

The term “living shoreline” may be unfamiliar to many. This practice is a nature-based solution to ever-growing problems related to sea level rise and storm water pollution. Our session will explain, in everyday terms, the science behind living shorelines. We will share findings from recent installations in and around our own bays, as well as plans for upcoming projects.

March 27: Birding of LBI – Four Seasons at Forsythe
Presenter: Susan Puder, Wildlife Photographer

Four Seasons at Forsythe: Attendees will discover the 47,000-acre Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge, located along the Atlantic Flyway. Birds visit the refuge throughout the year to rest, feed, and breed. Learn what you can find and when at New Jersey’s largest refuge.

April 10: Time to Wake Up The Beds… But Let’s Plan It First!
Presenter: Brown & Quattrochi Landscaping

 Plan your Spring and Summer Gardens before you Plant. It’s time for our gardens to awake. As this begins to happen it is so very important to have a plan especially along the coast. Don Brown and Paul Quattrocchi of The Brown & Quattrocchi Landscape Group will walk us through how to Plan your Spring and Summer Gardens before you Plant.

April 17: Great Storms on the Jersey Shore: Things We Didn’t Learn, And Should Have
Presenters: Amanda Devecka-Rinear, Scott Mazzella, Pat Trotter, and Margaret Buchholz

Hear from the people who have survived storms and written about them as well as those still dealing with the aftermath of Sandy. Some oral history will bring the subject to life. People living on the coast have experienced some epic storms… and will again. Turns out “hundred year storms” happen more often than they say! What can we learn from the past, and do about it in the future?

April 24: Wind Power Off Our Shore: Linking Questions with Knowledge
Presenters: Rutgers, Ocean County Marine Agent, Doug Zemeckis, Ph.D; Commercial fisherman Kevin Wank; Senior Policy Analyst for the New Jersey Organizing Project, Lisa Campenella; External Affairs Lead for Atlantic Shores Wind, Jessica Dealy; Ocean County Stakeholder Relations for Orsted Wind Energy, Chelsea Pascoe

This large scale alternate energy project holds some great promise and brings along with it some big questions. A round table discussion will include questions and answers from experts and from everyday people. It will provide insight into: Energy sustainability and the state of NJ’s goals The environmental impact on marine life Local business related to tourism and marine activities Regional economic and social issues related to building and maintaining the wind projects.
May 1: Pinelands
Presenters: John Volpa, Former Teacher of Environmental Science, Director of Education at Pinelands Adventures

John Volpa is a life-long resident of southern New Jersey who taught environmental science in Shamong Township for over twenty years. Since leaving the indoor classroom, John has been leading hiking, paddling, and bus tours as Pinelands Adventures’ Director of Education. In addition, John is the Founder and Chair of the Friends of the Black Run Preserve (FBRP) in Evesham Township.

May 8: Pinelands
Presenter: Carlton Montgomery, Pinelands Preservation Alliance

The New Jersey Pinelands encompasses interior forests, estuaries and barrier islands across almost one-quarter of New Jersey.  Here we find one of the Eastern Seaboard’s few surviving wildernesses, unique communities of plants and wildlife, great scenic beauty – and America’s most innovative conservation and growth management plan.  Carleton Montgomery, executive director of the Pinelands Preservation Alliance, will talk with us about how the Pinelands conservation laws work, how well they are working, and how people are using a variety of strategies and activities – including art – to make sure the Pinelands survives as one of Earth’s great natural treasures.

Register Link to Resources
May 15: Pinelands Discussion Series
Presenter: Albert Horner

Albert Horner is a Former Pinelands Preservation Alliance board member who has been photographing the pine barrens ecosystem as a project since 2015. The Pinelands Exhibition at the Long Beach Island Foundation of the Arts and Sciences is the culmination of his vision. Horner has prerecorded a gallery walk-through offering his insight to this prehistoric unique environment. After the walk-through, Horner will be available for a live, virtual Q & A session.

May 22: New Perspectives – Nature & Forest Therapy
Presenter: Rich Collins, Certified Guide for the Association of Nature and Forest Therapy Guides and Programs

In this presentation, Rich Collins of ANFT, will discuss the roots of ‘Forest Bathing’ as it’s called in Japan. The presentation will discuss the increasing body of scientific evidence documenting the physiological and emotional benefits of a closer nature connection, and the benefits of a regular practice of Nature & Forest Therapy, including what happens on a Nature & Forest Therapy walk.


May 28: Pinelands Discussion Series
Presenter: Richard Lewis
Richard Lewis is an active photography blogger, lecturer and instructor who conducts workshops in the New Jersey Pine Barrens. He has been a professional and fine art photographer since the 1970’s with a passion for landscapes, abandoned buildings, and interesting people. He travels to find unique landscapes, however his favorite location is the New Jersey Pine Barrens. He will discuss his book, “Photographing the New Jersey Pinelands,” as well as the works that are a part of the Pinelands Exhibition inside the gallery.
June 5: Coyotes of NJ
Presenters: Kathleen Kerwin, M.S. & Chris Crosby, Ph.D. student
A repeat of the popular February 2021 presentation! Coyotes arrived in New Jersey about 80 years ago and can now be found in almost every town across the state. Over the past 2 years, coyotes have immigrated to Barnegat Light, reproduced, and are dispersing across Long Beach Island. In this Science Saturday seminar, Rutgers University Ph.D. student, Chris Crosby, and Rutgers Wildlife Conservation and Management Program Coordinator, Kathleen Kerwin, will provide some history of eastern coyotes, a background in coyote ecology and behavior, and important guidance for avoiding negative human-coyote interactions.
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