Archive for the ‘Upcoming Events’ Category

Ice Plants, Mattress Wireweed & Other Onslaughts
Guest Speaker: Lew Stringer
7:30pm, Thursday, Jan 15th, 2015
FREE at the Randall Museum, 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA 

Have you seen how much of our coastal parkland is now covered in succulent ground cover, hardy New Zealand vines, and just too many highly invasive species? Come hear Lew give us the low down on ground cover invasive plants. He’s been working with the Presidio Trust, and before that the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, to develop strategies to manage the various species that would take everything over if they managed themselves.

Ice plant (Carpobrotus edulis) in Muriwai sand dunes

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Living in the Plate Boundary and Through the Ice Ages
Guest Speaker: Tanya Atwater
7:30pm, Thursday, Oct 16th, 2014
FREE at the Randall Museum, 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA 

The geology and  landscapes of California are the results of a long history of plate tectonic interactions. The majestic granite walls of Yosemite, the rich agricultural soils of the Central Valley, and the wild-colored rocks of the Coast Ranges all reflect a long history of subduction. Our present beloved topography of dramatic mountains and sweet valleys reflect the evolution of the San Andreas plate boundary. In turn, all these features have been modified by sea level and climate changes during the ice ages. Using maps, landscape images and computer animations, Atwater will describe and explain all these geo-treasures.

You can read more about Atwater and her background here. In the 70s, she wrote about the origins and growth of the San Andreas fault, and contributed to our current understanding of a then nascent idea — it sometimes seems hard to believe that plate tectonics is a new idea! For a little teaser of what she has to show — see the video below…

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SFPUC HQ as a wastewater treatment system
Guest Speaker: John Scarpulla
7:30pm, Thursday, Sep 18th, 2014
FREE at the Randall Museum, 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA 

The SFPUC built a new building very recently. John Scarpulla will tell us about how the new HQ building functions as a wastewater treatment system using an internal artificial swamp. The building is impressive in a lot of ways: consuming 32% less energy, 60% less water, and a 50% smaller carbon footprint than similarly-sized office buildings.

It is one of the first buildings in the nation with onsite treatment of gray and black water with an onsite “Living Machine” which reclaims and treats all of the building’s wastewater reducing per person water consumption from 12 gallons (normal office building) to 5 gallons.

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Restore Hetch Hetchy
Guest Speaker: Spreck Rosekrans
7:30pm, Thursday, August 21st, 2014
FREE at the Randall Museum, 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA 

Restore Hetch Hetchy is a grassroots non-profit organization seeking to restore the Hetch Hetchy Valley in Yosemite National Park to its original condition.

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How Earthquakes Are Measured
Guest Speaker: Julian Lozos
7:30pm, Thursday, July 17th, 2014
FREE at the Randall Museum, 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA 

Let’s say you feel an earthquake of moderate size. Once the shaking stops, you think, “Wow, was that the big one far off or a small one close by? How big was it?” The answer isn’t simply one number. Magnitude is certainly one way to describe an earthquake, but what is magnitude? What goes into that measurement? It’s also far from the only thing that scientists measure when a quake hits. And while we’re asking, how were quakes measured in the past?

Using a scenario Bay Area earthquake as a starting point, seismologist Julian Lozos will describe what measurements happen during, immediately after, and a little while after a big quake. There are also ongoing measurements that help make sense of past earthquakes and possible future ones.

Julian Lozos, a postdoctoral researcher with the US Geographic Survey and Stanford University, will present material for a general audience and answer your questions. Julian’s research is focused on using computer models to help understand the physics of earthquakes; he is particularly interested in understanding earthquakes that involve more than one fault. There are many faults in the Bay Area which tend to interact. Bring your friends and your questions.

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Streams to Sewers – SF’s Natural and Un-natural Drainage
Guest Speaker: Greg Braswell
7:30pm, Thursday, May 15th, 2014
FREE at the Randall Museum, 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA 

How did the old Precita Creek become the complex sewer crossing which now goes under Highway 101? When, where and why did Mission Creek go into the sewer? What are the ramifications of our sewer history and the ancient creeks they sometimes follow for today’s urban outflow systems? Greg Braswell will lead a pictorial exploration and discussion of his research on the muck and brick of San Francisco’s sewer history.

Water coming in from land on ocean beach

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It’s not actually a lake! All the squirrels are imports! And yes, there are sharks that patrol the waters of this beloved urban slough.

We’ll go on a whirlwind tour of all five Linnaean kingdoms and learn how some of the animals, plants, fungi, protists, and monera fit together in this misnamed watery ecosystem.

Though you’ve walked around its three mile circumference many times, there’s so much more to learn about the process and results of renewed human research at Lake Merritt. Check out recent bio-blitz compilations and other citizen and scientist cooperative research.

Presented by environmental educator Constance Taylor, founder of Wild Oakland.

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The Natural and Cultural Legacy of Yerba Buena Island
Guest Speaker: Ruth Gravanis
7:30pm, Thursday, Apr 17th, 2014
FREE at the Randall Museum, 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA 

To thousands of Bay Area residents, Yerba Buena Island means nothing more than the tunnel that connects the two spans of the Bay Bridge. But this little island is one of the Bay Area’s hidden treasures – a fascinating place with remarkable remnants of indigenous vegetation, resident and migratory wildlife, astounding views, and a complex cultural history.

Located only a mile and a half offshore of SF’s mainland, YBI is one of the Bay Area’s least known ecological secrets. Here we can find biological communities that include oak woodlands, riparian and coastal scrub, grasslands, and sandy beach. These habitats support a rich diversity of birds, butterflies and other wildlife.

The island’s human history begins with the First People, who used the island as a fishing camp and burial ground. Ownership, or claimed ownership, of this island-with-many-names passed from a multitude of private parties under Spanish and Mexican rule to the United States – at various times held by the Army, Navy and Coast Guard. The extant “torpedo factory,” lighthouse, and officers’ quarters on the National Register of Historic Places help keep the memories alive.

The speaker is Ruth Gravanis, long-time YBI watcher.

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Minature Marvels – Portraits in Biodiversity
Guest Speaker: David Liittschwager
7:30pm, Thursday, Mar 20th, 2014
FREE at the Randall Museum, 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA 

A Male Pacific Oyster, Crassostrea gigas Whisky Creek Shellfish Hatchery Netarts, Oregon

Photographer, David Littschwager, will share some of his amazing photos from just one cubic foot of SF Bay. This is part of a project that he has taken around the world — photographing what can be found in One Cubic Foot. He’s recently brought this project back home to the Bay Area.

David has been a photographer for National Geographic, Scientific American, Audubon and other magazines, many books, and museums. We are excited to have him here with us.

A World in One Cubic Foot: Portraits of Biodiversity

Photo by David Liittschwager: A Male Pacific Oyster, Crassostrea gigas, Whisky Creek Shellfish Hatchery, Netarts, Oregon

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Living with Mountain Lions
Guest Speaker: Zara McDonald
7:30pm, Thursday, Feb 20th, 2014
FREE at the Randall Museum, 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA 

Mountain Lions are keystone predators and play a critical role in maintaining the health and biodiversity of our ecosystems. Zara McDonald, President of the Felidae Fund, will discuss their ecology, history, and the challenges of sharing habitats with them.

Cougaroriginally posted to Flickr as Those Eyes, by Art G.

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