Eastern wild turkeys (Meleagris gallopavo silvestris) are an important game species throughout their range. Recently, declines in productivity have been reported throughout the Southeast, which is believed to be related to reduced reproductive success via reductions in nest and brood success. These declines warrant research on aspects of female reproductive ecology, such as movement, survival, and habitat selection. Ashley Lohr, a graduate student at the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources at UGA, will be presenting part of her Master's thesis research on reproductive strategies of female eastern wild turkeys in managed landscapes in the Piedmont region of Georgia at our monthly meeting held at the Sandy Creek Nature Center at 7 p.m. on Thursday, March 7th. Please see Ashley's bio below:
"I was born and raised in northern Virginia and earned my Bachelor of Science degree from Virginia Tech in May 2015, where I majored in Wildlife Conservation and minored in Entomology. I have always felt at home in the outdoors and enjoy watching birds visit my family’s backyard feeders, but it wasn’t until I took an Ornithology course at Virginia Tech that I fell hopelessly in love with birds. Since then, I’ve studied peregrine falcons in Shenandoah National Park through the Student Conservation Association; migrating raptors in Cape May, New Jersey; grassland birds in Iowa; breeding birds in Maryland, Virginia, and D.C.; and jaguars in Belize. To satisfy my interest in insects, I also spent two years conducting research on the invasive brown marmorated stink bug. In my spare time, I enjoy birding, wildlife photography, reading, and exploring new parks and cities on the weekends. Upon completing my Master’s degree, I aspire to begin a career in avian conservation and management with a state agency or private sector."
Ashley Lohr holding a banded and radio-tagged gobbler (adult male wild turkey) prior to release. (Photo taken by Collin Trepanitis. Jones County, GA. 2018)
The meeting will be held in the Nature Center’s Education and Visitor Center, 205 Old Commerce Road off U.S. Highway 441 north of Athens. To reach the center from the Loop 10 bypass, exit at U.S. Highway 441/Commerce Road and turn north toward Commerce. Go approximately a mile, turn left at the Sandy Creek Nature Center sign and go to the end of the road. Turn left at Old Commerce Road; parking for the Education and Visitor Center will be on the right.