Kerry Givens

Unido: 06.ago.2017 Última actividad: 25.ene.2023 iNaturalist

Although an ophthalmologist by trade, I have always considered myself a lifelong naturalist first. I was fortunate as a teenager to have been befriended by Ned Smith, a well-known but humble and selfless Pennsylvania nature artist and writer. Ned's powers of observation as a naturalist were legendary, and he became a huge inspiration to me at a formative time in my life. He greatly broadened by interest in the outdoors and encouraged me to take up photography as a medium for observing nature. Along the way I completed a Masters degree in plant ecology at Bucknell University, studying the life history complexities of the Solidago altissima polyploid goldendrod complex under Warren G. Abrahamson.

Although as a macrophotographer I am interested in all wild organisms, I have always had an attraction to native orchids. In recent years I have devoted many hours to searching for relict populations of the famously rare wild orchid Triphora trianthophoros (A.k.a three birds orchid or nodding pogonia) in Pennsylvania , guided by herbarium specimens collected many years ago. Most of the historic sites for the orchid have been lost to development and (I suspect) overcollecting. In fact the plant was believed to be extinct in PA from the 1980s to around 2012, when a previously unknown colony was located. Two other small populations of the orchid have been found since then. I'm convinced there must be more.

My defining characteristic as a naturalist is that I am the slowest hiker on the trail, since I tend to stop every 10 feet or so to admire or photograph a tiny mushroom, slime mold, flower, insect, etc.

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