Floracliff Nature Sanctuary


Anniversary Celebration by Beverly James
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Aquatic Diversity Workshop, 2012 by Beverly James
In 2012, we developed the Floracliff Field Studies Workshop Series to highlight biodiversity in the region and give people unique hands-on field experiences in Central Kentucky. Workshop topics have covered mushrooms, aquatic diversity, ferns, herpetology, insects and spiders, geology, spring flora, and more. Workshop participants gain experience in species identification, biological surveys and collection techniques, and field observations. Indoor activities cover natural history, ecology, life cycles, species behavior, paleontology, and more.

While the workshops are open to anyone, we think they will be of particular interest to naturalists, biology students, science educators, and land managers as well as those with a strong passion for the subject. Workshop fees covers instruction and a book or other resource for everyone who attends. Please inquire about scholarships by sending an email to info@floracliff.org

To register: 

Please fill out the registration form below and mail to the listed address with the payment. Early registration is encouraged. Workshops are limited to 15 participants unless otherwise noted. All workshops include moderate to strenuous hiking on uneven terrain with elevation changes.

Registration Form PDF document icon


2018 Workshop Schedule:


Lichens of Kentucky

March 9th and 10th (9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday)
Instructor: Dr. Allen Risk (Morehead State University)

Cost: $60


**This workshop has filled up. To be added to the waiting list, please email info@floracliff.org**


Lichens are fascinating complex organisms consisting of fungi along with green algae and/or cyanobacteria. On the first day (at Floracliff) of this two day workshop, participants will learn the basic morphological features of lichens and how to identify them using keys written by the instructor. On the second day, we will meet at an eastern Kentucky location to study lichens in the field. Please bring have a hand lens to assist with viewing lichen features in the field. This workshop is limited to 12 participants.


Allen C. Risk is a Professor of Biology at Morehead State University in Morehead, Kentucky. He is fascinated by all plants, but is particularly fond of mosses and lichens. He has collected, identified, and studied bryophytes from Maine to Florida throughout much of the eastern U. S. He also pursues dendrochronological research and enjoys tree climbing.



Beetles of Kentucky

August 4th and 5th (9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday)
Instructor: Paul Baker, University of Kentucky

Cost: $60


This workshop will provide an overview of the biology and diversity of beetles with emphasis placed on those found within the new Trail’s End Tract of the Floracliff Nature Sanctuary. We will also cover a variety of techniques used to find and sample beetles (and other insects) in their natural environment. This workshop is in conjunction with a survey of beetles being conducted in the Trail’s End Tract in 2018. There will be lectures in the mornings discussing beetles and collecting techniques. One afternoon will be spent observing and participating in the collection of beetles within the Floracliff property, and the other afternoon will be spent preparing some of the beetle samples for preservation. All participants will receive the book Beetles of Eastern North America.


Paul Baker is a graduate student at the University of Kentucky Entomology Department working on his doctorate degree. His current research involves understanding how bed bugs communicate and behave using chemical cues, which he hopes will lead to the design of a better bed bug trap. He also enjoys spending his weekends tracking down insects in their natural environments.



Birds of Kentucky

September 22nd -23rd (7:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday)
Instructor: Dr. David Brown, Eastern Kentucky University

Cost: $60


This is a beginning to intermediate field-based birding workshop. The emphasis will be on identifying birds by sound, but of course we’ll see lots of birds, too. The workshop will include a hands-on bird banding demonstration on Saturday morning. All participants will receive a Sibley Field Guide to Birds of Eastern North America. Field trips will include Floracliff Nature Sanctuary and Taylor Fork Ecological Area in Madison County. This workshop is limited to 12 participants.

David Brown is an Associate Professor of Wildlife Ecology at Eastern Kentucky University. He teaches Field Ornithology and Wetland Wildlife Management. His research focuses on conservation and the winter ecology of migratory songbirds.


Floracliff Nature Sanctuary • P.O. Box Box 21723 • Lexington, KY 40522 • (859) 296-0986 • info@floracliff.org
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