Category Archives: NEWS RELEASE

ANS Naturally Latinos 3 Conferene

NEWS RELEASE

ANS's Naturally Latinos Conference Celebrates "Superpower" Within Latinx Community

Anti-racism, Queer Experiences, and Trailblazers in the Outdoors in the Spotlight

For more information, contact caroline.brewer@anshome.org, or 240-899-9019, or lglisagoodnight@gmail.com, or 301-523-5394

For Immediate Release – November 2, 2020

CHEVY CHASE, MD – The Audubon Naturalist Society and its partners are proud to announce the third annual Naturally Latinos Conference (NLC3) happening virtually on Dec 2-4.

This year’s conference theme “Una Comunidad, Many Voices” underscores the reality that the Latinx community is not monolithic – Indigenous, Afro-Latinx, and LGBTQ+ perspectives matter.

“Each community brings its own superpower honed through the challenges they have faced. When you bring them together... it’s really powerful,” said NLC3 Conference Co-Chair Serenella Linares.

Conference highlights include, “A Conversation on Becoming Latinx Anti-Racists in Our Environmental Movement,” "The Queer Latinx Experience in the Outdoors,” and “Green Careers.”

Pinar Ateş Sinopoulos-Lloyd, the indigenous co-founder of Queer Nature, is one of five environmental champions being honored. The two keynoters are José G. González,
Founder and Director Emeritus of Latino Outdoors and Natali Fani-González, Vice-Chair of the Montgomery County Planning Board. She is the first Latinx and first millennial to serve on the five-member board.

Because the event is happening online, ANS is expecting audience members from the Caribbean and beyond to participate. The full agenda is here:  https://anshome.org/nl3-agenda-2020/

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Follow ANS at: www.Facebook.com/AudubonNaturalistSociety,  www.Twitter.com/ANStweet 
and @ANSNature on Instagram.

 About ANS: Throughout its history, ANS has championed nature for all by playing a pivotal role in conserving our region's iconic natural places from development including the C&O Canal, Dyke Marsh and, most recently, Ten Mile Creek. Past ANS member and board president, Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring, is credited with launching the now global environmental movement. ANS's nature experts provide hundreds of opportunities each year for children and adults to enjoy, learn about, and protect the environment.

App Lets People Take Action For Water Quality

NEWS ALERT

New Mobile App Lets People Take Action for Water Quality

It’s an easy, fun and fascinating way to safely collect and report water quality data

For Immediate Release: September 30, 2020
Photos available upon request

CHEVY CHASE, MD – The Audubon Naturalist Society (ANS) and Izaak Walton League of America (IWLA) have launched a brand-new version of Creek Critters®, an innovative smartphone app that empowers people to collect valuable data and report on local water quality. Using only a smartphone and a small aquarium net, everyone can learn about stream health and become advocates for their own natural resources.

“It always fascinates me to see how excited people get by discovering life in their streams,” says Gregg Trilling, Conservation Outreach Manager for the Audubon Naturalist Society. “Creek Critters helps newcomers and experienced stream monitors alike experience that thrill of discovery.”

Water quality in the United States is under threat from a wide range of sources, from excessive road salt use to stormwater runoff. Professional water quality experts are unable to monitor even half of the more than 3.5 million miles of streams and rivers across the country. ANS and IWLA have trained community scientists for decades to collect critical water quality data and engage local communities.

Creek Critters uses simple step-by-step instructions and an interactive guide to help users find and identify organisms in local streams. Collecting and identifying these small, fascinating animals, called benthic macroinvertebrates, is one of the most effective ways to assess stream health. Benthic macroinvertebrates live in creeks and streams and have different tolerance levels to water pollution. By identifying and reporting the macroinvertebrates they find in a stream, anyone, including students, can help paint a picture of water quality and pollution threats across the country.

“For students, Creek Critters is a splashy introduction to the stunning biodiversity that can be found if you learn to look,” says Dani Moore, science teacher at Wilson High School in DC.

The data collected by app users is uploaded into the Clean Water Hub, the water quality database managed by IWLA. The first database of its kind, the Clean Water Hub brings together data collected by volunteers across the country in a single, user-friendly website.

“With the Creek Critters app now connected to the Clean Water Hub database, people across the country are empowered to do their own water quality monitoring, share their results and use their data,” says Samantha Briggs, Clean Water Program Director for IWLA.

The app can be used by people working alone or by small groups, making it an easy activity to do while social distancing. It is also family friendly and can be used by schools, camps and clubs to educate and engage students of all ages.

The free app is available for download on iOS and Android devices.

CONTACT:

Caroline Brewer
Director of Marketing and Communications
Audubon Naturalist Society
(240) 899-9019 or caroline.brewer@anshome.org

Gregg Trilling
Conservation Outreach Manager
Audubon Naturalist Society
gregg.trilling@anshome.org

Samantha Briggs
Clean Water Program Director
Izaak Walton League of America
(847) 650-5112 or sbriggs@iwla.org

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About The Izaak Walton League of America: Founded in 1922, the Izaak Walton League of America (www.iwla.org) and our more than 40,000 members protect America’s outdoors through education, community-based conservation, and promoting outdoor recreation.

About ANS: Throughout its history, ANS has championed nature for all by playing a pivotal role in conserving our region's iconic natural places from development including the C&O Canal, Dyke Marsh and, most recently, Ten Mile Creek. Past ANS member and board president, Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring, is credited with launching the now global environmental movement. ANS's nature experts provide hundreds of opportunities each year for children and adults to enjoy, learn about, and protect the environment.

Follow ANS at: www.Facebook.com/AudubonNaturalistSociety,  www.Twitter.com/ANStweet 
and @ANSNature on Instagram.

ANS Will Keep Up The Pressure

NEWS ALERT

ANS WILL KEEP UP THE PRESSURE TO ALTER 'SHORT-SIGHTED' BELTWAY/I-270 EXPANSION

Organization's opposition based on threats to people, wildlife, and the environment

For more information and to arrange interviews with speakers, contact caroline.brewer@anshome.org, or 240-899-9019, eliza.cava@anshome.org, or 202-503-9141, or lglisagoodnight@gmail.com, or 301-523-5394

For Immediate Release – August 27, 2020

Chevy Chase, MD – Lisa Alexander, the executive director of the Audubon Naturalist Society, on Tuesday, Aug. 25 voiced the organization’s opposition to the Beltway/I-270 expansion project that will lock in traffic and development patterns for the next 50 years, impose enormous financial risks, and threaten the lives of people, wildlife, and the environment.

“In the face of dual crises of Climate Change and the Covid Pandemic, expanding a roadway at the expense of water quality, parkland and tree cover is short-sighted,” Alexander said in her testimony which was included in WTOP’s coverage of the issue.

Eliza Cava, ANS’s Director of Conservation, will offer additional testimony at a hearing scheduled for September 3. She’ll discuss how the proposed expansion would increase air pollution, noise pollution, and stormwater pollution. The Beltway I-495/I-270 Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) is out for public comment review until Oct. 8. ANS is part of a coalition that has been working toward providing alternatives to the expansion and demanding a more transparent process.  ANS’s Beltway Blog offers information on how to testify/submit written comment.

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Follow ANS at: www.Facebook.com/AudubonNaturalistSociety,  www.Twitter.com/ANStweet 
and @ANSNature on Instagram.

 About ANS: Throughout its history, ANS has championed nature for all by playing a pivotal role in conserving our region's iconic natural places from development including the C&O Canal, Dyke Marsh and, most recently, Ten Mile Creek. Past ANS member and board president, Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring, is credited with launching the now global environmental movement. ANS's nature experts provide hundreds of opportunities each year for children and adults to enjoy, learn about, and protect the environment.

Rachel Carson Birthday

NEWS ALERT

CELEBRATING RACHEL CARSON WITH PIONEERING WOMEN AND NEW ONLINE APP

The Show, of Birthday Love for Carson, Will Go On (Online)!

For more information, contact caroline.brewer@anshome.org, or 240-899-9019, or lglisagoodnight@anshome.org, or 301-523-5394

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – May 21, 2020

Chevy Chase, MD – To honor the life and legacy of Rachel Carson, the mother of the modern environmental movement, the Audubon Naturalist Society is throwing her a Zoom birthday party starting at noon ET on May 27. Click here to register.

ANS has long and precious relationship with Carson who was a beloved member, former board president, and friend to many esteemed members of the organization. The celebration, hosted by ANS Executive Director Lisa Alexander, will feature women leaders and women in science reflecting on Carson’s contributions to the world and their own careers. Special invited guests include Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, who succeeded in getting a National Park Service panel honoring Carson established in DC’s Glover Archbold Park and her Definitive Biographer Linda Lear, a longtime ANS member.

ANS will pay homage to Rachel Carson by spotlighting women to be speakers who are persevering in her footsteps and forging their own paths. The pre-birthday celebration kicks off Memorial Day weekend with social media posts and the release of engagement tools, such as the region’s FIRST interactive map of places in the Washington, D.C. region that honor Carson or that she in some way touched, along with downloadable activities for children and families

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Follow ANS at: www.Facebook.com/AudubonNaturalistSociety,  www.Twitter.com/ANStweet 
and @ANSNature on Instagram.

 About ANS: Throughout its history, ANS has championed nature for all by playing a pivotal role in conserving our region's iconic natural places from development including the C&O Canal, Dyke Marsh and, most recently, Ten Mile Creek. Past ANS member and board president, Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring, is credited with launching the now global environmental movement. ANS's nature experts provide hundreds of opportunities each year for children and adults to enjoy, learn about, and protect the environment.

ANS Virtual Tree Tour

NEWS ALERT

DURING THIS TIME OF GREAT UNEASE, GO ONLINE AND GET CLOSER TO TREES

ANS Launches Virtual Tour of Remarkable Trees at Woodend Nature Sanctuary

For Immediate Release: April 1, 2020
For more information, contact caroline.brewer@anshome.org, or 240-899-9019, or Alison Pearce, Director of Restoration, alison.pearce@anshome.org, 301-704-5864 or lglisagoodnight@gmail.com, or 301-523-5394.

CHEVY CHASE, MD – Just in time to ease some of the stress and anxiety of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Audubon Naturalist Society is launching a virtual tree tour, featuring photos, histories, and uses of 21 trees on its sanctuary.

Featured trees include natives, such as the American beech, sassafras, and white oak, Maryland’s state tree, which can live up to 500 years and grow up to 100 feet tall, and a 240-year-old walnut tree.  “Learning to identify local trees is a great way to be in touch with your natural environment and develop a ‘sense of place,' about where you live,” says ANS Restoration Director Alison Pearce, who oversaw development of the tour, which includes Montgomery County Champion Trees.  “We have had a printed tree tour brochure available in the past, but things have changed. We have technology that allows for a more interactive and convenient online format and now seems the perfect time to make it accessible to the region.”

In addition to providing natural beauty, shade, and food for wildlife, such as birds, pollinators, and squirrels, studies have found that trees offer a bounty of other benefits, including playing a huge role, of course, in mitigating the effects of climate change. Click here to begin your adventure in the new ANS Virtual Tree Tour.

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Follow ANS at: www.Facebook.com/AudubonNaturalistSociety,  www.Twitter.com/ANStweet 
and @ANSNature on Instagram.

 About ANS: Throughout its history, ANS has championed nature for all by playing a pivotal role in conserving our region's iconic natural places from development including the C&O Canal, Dyke Marsh and, most recently, Ten Mile Creek. Past ANS member and board president, Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring, is credited with launching the now global environmental movement. ANS's nature experts provide hundreds of opportunities each year for children and adults to enjoy, learn about, and protect the environment.

Join ANS for Earth Hour

NEWS ALERT

NO LIGHTS SATURDAY NIGHT: JOIN ANS AND THE REST OF THE WORLD FOR PLANET-LOVING EARTH HOUR  

Earth Hour Goes Digital Amidst Pandemic

For Immediate Release: March 27, 2020
For more information, contact Caroline.brewer@anshome.org or lglisagoodnight@gmail.com, 301-523-5394.

CHEVY CHASE, MD – The Audubon Naturalist Society encourages the public to observe Earth Hour as part of ongoing efforts to combat climate change.

WHAT IS EARTH HOUR?

The event itself is quite simple. Businesses, organizations, and individuals are asked to turn off home and building lights for at least one hour. Earth Hour's mission is to (virtually) unite people and bring awareness about the need to take action for our planet in the midst of climate change.

 WHEN IS EARTH HOUR?

Saturday, March 28, 8:30 pm - 9:30 pm.

WHAT CAN I DO DURING EARTH HOUR?

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Follow ANS at: www.Facebook.com/AudubonNaturalistSociety,  www.Twitter.com/ANStweet 
and @ANSNature on Instagram.

 About ANS: Throughout its history, ANS has championed nature for all by playing a pivotal role in conserving our region's iconic natural places from development including the C&O Canal, Dyke Marsh and, most recently, Ten Mile Creek. Past ANS member and board president, Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring, is credited with launching the now global environmental movement. ANS's nature experts provide hundreds of opportunities each year for children and adults to enjoy, learn about, and protect the environment.

Development Could Lead to More Flooding in NOVA

NEWS RELEASE

Terrible, Awful, Horrible Development Proposal
 Could Lead to More Flooding and Worse in NOVA

ANS, Allies Join Forces to Stop Residential Development
 in Dogue Creek Floodplain

For Immediate Release – October 16, 2018
For more information, contactcarolinebrewer@anshome.org or 301-652-9188, ext. 23, or Monica Billger, monica.billger@anshome.org

CHEVY CHASE, MD – The Audubon Naturalist Society (ANS) is taking a stand to protect Dogue Creek from an ill-conceived plan to build on five acres at 8800 Richmond Highway. The proposal, which goes against longstanding county policies, calls for building 43 townhouses and adding 41,000 cubic yards of fill to the 100-year floodplain at Dogue Creek.

The Fairfax County Planning Commission would have to amend the comprehensive plan to allow the project to move forward. Approving the development could place nearby homes and properties at greater risk of flooding, set a precedent that paves the way for more development in floodplains and sensitive environmental areas near Dogue Creek and all over the county, and raise flood insurance costs.

“This is a terrible, awful, horrible idea,” says Monica Billger, ANS’s Northern Virginia Advocacy Manager, “for more reasons than we can count, but one is enough. We teach children that when you put something in water, the water spreads. In this case, it could spread far and fast enough to threaten communities, especially downstream properties. Does anyone remember this past summer in Virginia, when stormwater forced people out of their cars? Or last year in Houston with Hurricane Harvey? Harvey alone cost $125 billion in damage and the loss of nearly 70 lives. We don’t want Harvey-type damage in Northern Virginia. Flood me once, shame on me. Flood me twice, shame on you. This is a terrible idea whose time should never come.”

What: Contact ANS to learn more and attend with us, alongside local and regional friends, who oppose this development in the floodplain, during the next public hearing on the proposal.

Date: Wednesday, October 24, 2018 at 7:30 p.m.

Location: Fairfax County Government Center

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Follow ANS at: www.Facebook.com/AudubonNaturalistSociety,  www.Twitter.com/ANStweet 
and @ANSNature on Instagram.

 About ANS: Throughout its history, ANS has played a pivotal role in conserving our region's iconic natural places from development including the C&O Canal, Dyke Marsh and, most recently, Ten Mile Creek. Past ANS member and board president, Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring, is credited with launching the now global environmental movement. ANS's nature experts provide hundreds of opportunities each year for children and adults to enjoy, learn about, and protect the environment.

Secretary Grumbles

NEWS RELEASE

Stormwater Flooding and Pollution on His Mind:

Maryland’s DOE Secretary Ben Grumbles to Tour Innovative Stormwater and Environmental Projects at ANS as part of Gov. Hogan’s Montgomery County Day

For Immediate Release – September 25, 2018

For more information, contact Caroline Brewer at carolinebrewer@anshome.org or 301-652-9188, ext. 23, or Mark Shaffer at mark.shaffer1@maryland.gov

CHEVY CHASE, MD – Ben Grumbles, Secretary of the Maryland Department of the Environment, will tour Audubon Naturalist Society’s headquarters at Woodend Nature Sanctuary to learn more about ANS’s innovative “tree-safe” rain garden and other green infrastructure projects. ANS’s year-old rain garden features more than 300 native trees and shrubs and two lengthy compost-filled berms that filter and slow polluted stormwater, a technology that is essential to help this region combat the flooding and other damage done to property, homes, businesses, and roads during severe storms and hurricanes, like the ones we’ve experienced just this summer.

ANS also is in the process of restoring its meadows and forests by planting thousands of new trees, shrubs, wildflowers and native plants, which the Secretary will get to see during his tour. The sanctuary is bursting with rich and ever-expanding biodiversity that’s already attracting more pollinators, insects, and birds. And, the region’s longest serving independent environmental group is planning to restore its Clean Drinking Stream to improve wildlife habitat and educational opportunities. The rain garden and other green infrastructure projects are designed as demonstration projects for local homeowners and residents, and the sanctuary is a year-round outdoor classroom open to all.

WHAT: Secretary of the Department of the Environment will tour ANS’s nature sanctuary
WHEN: 
Tuesday, September 25, 2:15 p.m.
WHERE: ANS headquarters at Woodend Sanctuary, 8940 Jones Mill Road, Chevy Chase, MD 20815
WHO: Maryland’s Secretary for the Department of the Environment Ben Grumbles, MDE's Deputy Secretary Horacio Tablada, ANS Executive Director Lisa Alexander, ANS Conservation Director Eliza Cava, and ANS Restoration Director Alison Pearce.

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Follow ANS at: www.Facebook.com/AudubonNaturalistSociety,  www.Twitter.com/ANStweet 
and @ANSNature on Instagram.

 About ANS: Throughout its history, ANS has played a pivotal role in conserving our region's iconic natural places from development including the C&O Canal, Dyke Marsh and, most recently, Ten Mile Creek. Past ANS member and board president, Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring, is credited with launching the now global environmental movement. ANS's nature experts provide hundreds of opportunities each year for children and adults to enjoy, learn about, and protect the environment.

Smartphone App Uses Little Critters

NEWS RELEASE

Award-Winning Smartphone App uses Little Critters to do Big Things for Clean Water

ANS Hosts the Next Creek Critters Event September 29

For Immediate Release: September 21, 2018

For more information, contact Caroline Brewer at carolinebrewer@anshome.org or 301-652-9188, ext. 23 or Gregg Trilling at gregg.trilling@anshome.org or 240-426-7150.

CHEVY CHASE, MD – The Audubon Naturalist Society has won an innovation award from Bethesda Magazine for the ANS Creek Critters Program which features a free smartphone app where users can easily monitor water quality and protect local streams in the D.C. region. The award will be presented October 18 at the 10th annual Bethesda Green Gala.

The Creek Critters app allows users to identify small organisms – or critters – in local waterways. What lives at the bottom of streams -- benthic (meaning “bottom-dwelling”) macroinvertebrates – are indicators of water quality because these organisms exhibit a range of sensitivities to pollutants and stressors. Among the many critters are crayfish, snails, aquatic worms, and a large variety of insect larvae. App users generate Stream Health Reports based on their findings, and the reports are displayed on an interactive map. ANS and its partners have used Creek Critters to engage nearly 7,500 people at more than 200 events and activities. Adding those who have used the app independently of ANS, more than 10,000 people have been introduced to water quality monitoring through the app– with users posting data from all over the Washington, D.C. metro region, the United States, and abroad.

“The Creek Critters app is designed to make it easy for people to do this important work and the technology is turning users into powerful advocates,” said ANS Executive Director Lisa Alexander. “Now, with real-time knowledge, we can better protect our precious waterways.”

On September 29, ANS Creek Critter Program Manager Gregg Trilling will lead a field class for the Anacostia Watershed Society’s “Watershed Stewards Academy” students. Trilling and his band of trained interns, staff, and volunteers regularly fan out across the region to work with groups, visit schools, and present at conferences and festivals to maximize the number of people who hop into their local streams to check on water quality.

“I am still impressed with how this simple app along with a few nets and buckets has grown a community of clean water enthusiasts. Most people come to our events thinking only fish live in the creek. We can hear the oohs and ahhs when they find their first macro-invertebrate and by the time they leave, they are asking about the health of the stream and what they can do,” said award nominator Sarah Morse, Executive Director of the Little Falls Watershed Alliance.

An inspiration behind Creek Critters is ANS’s Water Quality Monitoring Program, one of the largest and longest-running citizen science programs in the country. Since the early 1990s, the program has operated throughout Montgomery County, Maryland, and in parts of the District of Columbia. The program is unique in that volunteers are trained to identify the organisms in the field and then release them alive, rather than preserving them in alcohol and sending them to a lab for identification.

The Creek Critters app launched in 2015. It’s available for free download in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.

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Follow ANS at: 
www.Facebook.com/AudubonNaturalistSociety,  www.Twitter.com/ANStweet 
and @ANSNature on Instagram.

About ANS: Throughout its history, ANS has played a pivotal role in conserving our region's iconic natural places from development including the C&O Canal, Dyke Marsh and, most recently, Ten Mile Creek. Past ANS member and board president, Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring, is credited with launching the now global environmental movement. ANS's nature experts provide hundreds of opportunities each year for children and adults to enjoy, learn about, and protect the environment.

Stormwater Pollution is Not Going Away

NEWS RELEASE

ANS Message to Montgomery County Council: Stormwater Pollution is Not Going Away

For Immediate Release: July 18, 2018
For more information, contact Caroline Brewer, caroline.brewer@anshome.org or 202-830-5115 or Eliza Cava, 301-652-9188, ext. 22, eliza.cava@anshome.org

CHEVY CHASE, MD – ANS Director of Conservation Eliza Cava issued the following statement in response to the Montgomery County Council’s vote on stormwater issues:

"Stormwater pollution is not going to go away. It is getting worse, with bigger, more intense storms an increasing fact of life due to climate change and more and more pavement and sprawl turning that rain into stormwater pollution. We must redouble our efforts to use green infrastructure to stop stormwater pollution from destroying our streams and infrastructure.

ANS will continue its long partnership with the Department of Environmental Protection to advise upon and watchguard the progress of this new contracting method, and continue to make recommendations about how to clean up our streams and watersheds for the benefit of nature and our communities.

The compromise is not perfect but it allowed the Council to pass a special appropriation, which was needed to get work moving again on these critical environmental projects. We're pleased that it includes commitments to green infrastructure and Low Impact Development projects that use lessons of nature to manage stormwater and heal our streams.

ANS thanks the Councilmembers who worked hard to make this special appropriation happen."

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About ANS: ANS is the oldest, independent environmental organization in the DMV. Throughout its history, ANS has played a pivotal role in conserving our region’s iconic natural places from development including the C&O Canal, Dyke Marsh and, most recently, Ten Mile Creek. Past ANS member and board president, Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring, is credited with launching the now global environmental movement. ANS’s nature experts provide hundreds of opportunities each year for children and adults to enjoy, learn about, and protect the environment.

Follow ANS at www.Facebook.com/AudubonNaturalistSociety and www.Twitter.com/ANStweets