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World Premiere — Field Biologist // with Vigia
April 6 @ 11:00 am - 1:00 pm
// Field Biologist //
From award-winning director Jared Flesher—Field Biologist is the story of 22-year-old Tyler Christensen, a talented but somewhat rudderless high school graduate from New Jersey still trying to figure out what to do with his life. Tyler’s great love is being outside, chasing birds and studying wildlife. So one day he decides—brushing aside his lack of a college degree or scientific credentials—to drop everything and travel to Costa Rica to start doing his own conservation-oriented research on birds in the tropics. His adventure takes him from the cloud forests of Monteverde to the mangrove swamps of the Nicoya Peninsula, culminating in a plan to try to help save the highly endangered mangrove hummingbird. Trailer
// Vigia //
Because of pollution, pesticides, and other toxic substances, a bee decides to leave her hive, looking for a more comfortable place for her to live in. Trailer
// Panelists //
Tyler Christensen is a citizen scientist, licensed bird bander, nature educator, ecologist, and musician. His work has taken him from central New Jersey working as an environmental educator for the Mercer County Park Commission to the tropical forests of Costa Rica, where he collects data on resident and migratory birds and conducts bird banding demonstrations for ecotourists at the Nicoya Peninsula Avian Research Station, a bird banding project he co-founded in 2011. Tyler is a board member and the Education Chair of the Washington Crossing Audubon Society, where he leads their “Birding Basics” course for beginning birders.
Sir Peter Crane is the Carl W. Knobloch, Jr. Dean of the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and Professor of Botany at Yale University. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, foreign associate of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, a foreign member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, and a member of the German Academy Leopoldina. He was knighted in the U.K. for services to horticulture and conservation in 2004. Dean Crane currently serves on the Board of the Global Crop Diversity Trust, the Missouri Botanical Garden, the Chicago Botanic Garden, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at the University of Texas, and the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation.
Jared Flesher is an award-winning reporter, photojournalist, and documentary filmmaker, with a focus on the topics of energy, agriculture, and ecology. He is also the editor of Edible Jersey magazine. Jared’s articles have been published by The New York Times Online, The Wall Street Journal Online, The Christian Science Monitor, Grist.com, The Huffington Post, the Columbia Journalism Review, New Jersey Monthly magazine, Inside Jersey magazine, Edible Jersey, and Gannett New Jersey newspapers. His films include The Farmer and the Horse (2010), Sourlands (2012) and Field Biologist (2013). Jared graduated magna cum laude from the University of Richmond with a degree in journalism. In college, he served as the editor-in-chief of the campus newspaper, The Collegian.
Jacob Musser (Moderator) is an evolutionary ornithologist and PhD candidate in Yale’s Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology. For his research he explores the evolutionary origin of feathers by investigating the genetic instructions that underlie how they are built. This research has taken him from the field to the lab and led him to work with Emus, chickens, and alligators. In his spare time he can be found traveling across Connecticut and abroad in pursuit of rare and elusive birds.
Dr. Richard O. Prum is the William Robertson Coe Professor of Ornithology in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Yale University and the Curator of Ornithology and Head Curator of Vertebrate Zoology at the Peabody Museum of Natural History. Currently, Dr. Prum directs the Franke Program in Science and the Humanities, which is a new initiative at Yale that aims to foster communication, mutual understanding, collaborative research and teaching among diverse scientific and humanistic disciplines.