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The UNM Biodiversity Webinar Series—Fall 2020 with U.S. Senator Tom Udall serving as honorary co-host launched on September 14 just as the Summer was giving away to Fall that arrived with fury. As was anticipated by public health experts, coronavirus infections as well as death rates are on the rise again across Europe, and restrictions are being reimposed. In the United States, the cruel COVID-19-saga being scripted, produced and performed by the President is frustrating the public and the public health experts. 

Alongside the intensifying public health crisis, manifestation of climate breakdown is also intensifying. The wildfires burning across California recently established a new designation: gigafire. “On Monday, the August complex fire in northern California expanded beyond 1m acres, elevating it from a mere 'megafire' to a new classification, 'gigafire', never used before in a contemporary setting in the state,” the Guardian reported yesterday. 

And, in my home state of New Mexico, leaves are not the only thing falling from the sky this autumn—but also birds are falling dead on the ground (see reporting in The New York TimesThe GuardianCNN, and the BBC) which led to the establishment of the Southwest Avian Mortality Project, a citizen science initiative to create an eye-witness archive of fallen birds.

On this stage of dispiriting ecological news, the Species in Peril project at UNM and the New Mexico BioPark Society will present the second webinar titled Flora, Fishes, and Fireflies: Assessing Species in Peril in New Mexico and Abroad. The webinar is scheduled for tomorrow, Thursday, October 8, 5:30-7:00 pm Mountain Time / 7:30-9:00 pm Eastern Time.

The webinar is FREE and open to the public, but registration is required. Please register at the PROGRAM page of the webinar series:
Clayton Meredith of New Mexico BioPark Society will moderate the webinar that will feature three panelists:

   Dr. Kira Mileham
   Dr. Sara Lewis 
   Dr. Topiltzin Contreras-MacBeath

The three panelists and the moderator all work on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) initiatives to assess imperiled species. The IUCN created and maintains the global IUCN Red List of Threatened Species

The webinar will open with a welcome message from  Senator Tom Udall.

The Flora, Fishes, and Fireflies webinar promises to be a wondrous journey through the world of fireflies, plants and fishes—covering lives above-ground, on-the-ground, and in-the-water. Don’t miss this one! 

I hope to see you tomorrow at the webinar.

Best wishes in this time of peril,

Subhankar Banerjee

Director and Founder, Species in Peril project at UNM
You are receiving this email because of your past and/or ongoing affiliation with conservationist Subhankar Banerjee.

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