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Speaker Series Event – The Hellbender: New York’s Living Fossil with Robin Foster

Posted on Jul 13, 2015


Hellbender (Cryptobranchus alleganiensis) DSC_1278

The Eastern Hellbender is a unique salamander found only in the eastern United States.  Hellbenders are “living fossils” that have remained virtually unchanged for millions of years, giving us a glimpse into our ecological past.  In recent years, this iconic species has declined significantly in New York and throughout its entire range.  RTPI staff are working with conservation biologist Robin Foster and other conservationists to better understand the status of this species in our region. Join us as we welcome Robin at Roger Tory Peterson Institute on Friday, July 17th at 7pm to learn more about the hellbender and how you can help to conserve this amazing amphibian! This event is free and open to the public. RTPI is located at 311 Curtis St., Jamestown, NY. We hope to see you at what promises to be an engaging event!

Robin Foster is a PhD Candidate at the University of Buffalo Graduate Program in Evolution, Ecology and Behavior.  After several years as an elementary school teacher, she decided to pursue her passion for wildlife and began a new career in conservation biology.  She obtained both her BA and MA degrees in biology from SUNY Buffalo State.  Robin has been involved with hellbender research and conservation since 2004.  She has spent many hours in the field handling these gentle giants and is passionate about sharing these experiences with others to help spread the word about the importance of salamanders and their freshwater habitats.

Posted by Melanie Smith – RTPI Communications Coordinator