Squam Speaker Series: Losing Ground: Carnivores on the Louisiana Coast

Wednesday, November 20, 2019 - 6:30pm to 8:00pm

Our Squam Speaker Series is held once a month on Wednesday evenings. Join us for this month's talk, on Wednesday, November 20th. Climate change in New Hampshire will change weather patterns, shift species ranges, and cause other disruptions to local ecosystems- wildlife populations may have to adjust to new conditions or face extirpation. How will climate change impact some of these same species now inhabiting coastal areas along the Gulf of Mexico where land loss compounds the effects? Conservation biologist Mirka Zapletal will share her research on coastal carnivore ecology in Louisiana, describing present and future species distributions for carnivores like coyotes, raccoons, otters, and rodent species which exhibit many of the same ecological traits. Models of future scenarios for Louisiana’s coast suggest dramatically altered landscapes going forward. In Louisiana’s dynamic coastal zone where restoration is big business, management decisions to combat those changes incorporate economic, cultural, and endangered species concerns. Those same decisions can have profound impacts on the predator communities (or lack thereof) of restored areas.

Following Mirka's talk, a Naturalist from Squam Lakes Natural Science Center will join us with a live animal ambassador to discuss how climate driven phenology changes may impact our native wildlife species here in NH.

About the Speaker:

Mirka received a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology from Tulane University and Master of Education from Harvard Graduate School of Education, after which she spent 7 years in high school social studies classrooms. An opportunity assisting with conservation research convinced her to follow that passion and she went back to school for a Master of Science in Environmental Studies from Antioch University New England. She is currently working on her dissertation project in Ecology & Evolutionary Biology at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Originally from New Hampshire, she was very happy to have the chance to move back to a land of mountains and cold weather; she now works in informal science education at the McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center while completing her degree.


SLA is located at 534 US Rt. 3 in Holderness. Click Here for a Google Map


This program is sponsored by the Squam Lakes Association and the Squam Lakes Natural Science Center.