About the podcast
This lighthearted and fun (though seriously scientific) podcast developed as a natural extension of the Wild Burlington Newsletter. I get lots of natural history questions from the mundane to the bizarre. Many of these are simple ID questions, like “Help! I found this leaf in my backyard. What species is it?” I love getting ID questions, but I have a hard time pointing people to reliably good tree ID sources. So I set out to develop a short audio course on tree identification, but how could I fully explain tree identification without diving deeply into geology, wildlife, land-use history, and the full ecological lives of trees? And so here we are, a podcast dedicated to the art and science of natural history!
“The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn.”
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
What you’ll learn
This podcast will teach you first and foremost how to look at natural world, to see it as a vibrant, dynamic, and bizarre series of interconnected elements, both living and non-living. We’ll dive into the nitty gritty but always zoom out with a focus on developing an understanding of the context of the content. Don’t get me wrong, you’ll certainly learn lots of content, but the more you listen, the more you’ll see the connections between the lives of trees and the animals, soils, water, disturbances, humans, invasive species, and other ecological factors they interact with. Think of it like learning a language. You could just memorize a bunch of vocab words, but without the larger picture – syntax, grammar, cadence – you’ll never be fluent. This podcast will give you the foundation to speak the language of the woods. Not bad, eh?
About your hosts
PROFESSOR EWEAGEY (aka Teage O’Connor)
Hey listeners –
I’m your host, Teage O’Connor, aka Professor Eweagey, and I grew up wild in the boreal forests of Alaska only to be tamed by the chaparral suburbs of Southern California. I’ve been inching my way towards a feral existence since taking up residency in Vermont, and find my inspiration for the task from the raccoons and opossums that share my yard. I’m fascinated by trees, landscape interpretation, and etymology, have a penchant for writing, photography, and web design, and am perhaps a bit too excited about sharing my passion for the natural world with others. When I’m not out in the field walking really really slowly, you can find me grinding out miles in preparation for my next marathon.
~ Prof. Eweagey
Glenn Etter has gone through a few life “phases.”
As an academic, he graduated with highest honors in English and Mathematics from the University of North Carolina, then completed a Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology at UC-Berkeley. As a non-academic, he studied, performed, and taught improvisational theater for many years in the San Francisco area. He also worked for more than a decade as a whitewater rafting guide.
Glenn always liked the great outdoors. Often when outside, he would exclaim, “hey, we are in the great outdoors!” He eventually taught at an outdoor school for elementary schoolers in California, then joined the Field Naturalist Program at the University of Vermont as an experimental post-doc. It was there he learned more about the plants and animals of the Northeast; it was also there he met the great Teage O’Connor.
In his most recent life phase, Glenn has become a father and worked as a classroom teacher, mainly teaching English and creative writing to middle and high school students. The culmination of this life work is, of course, his role as the “good natured, slightly ignorant everyman” on The Single Acorn podcast. He is very happy to be working with Professor Eweagey and Dr. Fleener in this enterprise.
Glenn has many hobbies, including song-writing, watching birds, kayaking, playing games, making up hobbies, and dressing up like a raisin.
DR CHRISTINE FLEENER
The University of Chicago gave Christine a doctorate in Comparative Human Development for her thesis on “A Dynamic Systems Approach to Spatial Cognitive Development and Early Experience in Free-Ranging Rhesus Macaques (Macaca mulatta)” and possibly a clerical error. Regardless of whether she deserved it, she got to live in Puerto Rico for a few years watching monkeys and saving dogs (check out puntasantiagodogs.org to see the nonprofit she founded!). She has made a career of finding serious answers to ridiculous questions and is currently leisurely becoming an expert naturalist of the Pacific Northwest as she teaches at the Portland Forest School in Oregon. She also enjoys designing puzzling games and role-playing experiences for you and everyone you know (watch this space: thebewilds.com).
Oh, and wombat poop is cubed shaped. You cannot un-know this now.
About Crow’s Path
Since 2010, Crow’s Path has been building a community in Vermont’s Champlain Valley whose central fire is connection to self, others, and the land. Our programs weave natural history, earth-based skills, and community building together through story, song, play, exploration, and hands-on activities. You’ll find kiddos at our programs building debris shelters, starting fires with a bow drill to make hemlock tea, tracking deer along a cedar bluffs, and singing songs about Dale the Fire Gnome.
In our programs for adults, we train teachers to use outdoor spaces as classroom resources, we teach land owners how to interpret their property’s history, and we inspire adults to look more closely at the world around them through engaging lectures and field walks. If you’re digging the podcast, then you’ll love Crow’s Path adult programs, like the Wild Burlington Lectures and our summer natural history intensive, Vermont’s Natural History.
Crow’s Path is a 501(c)(3) non-profit located in northwestern Vermont.
All proceeds from the Wild Burlington Newsletter and the Single Acorn Podcast go directly to supporting our nature connection programs.
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