Speaker Series

Everyone is welcome to attend membership meetings in the Recreation Room of the San Francisco County Fair Building (SFCFB) at 9th Avenue and Lincoln Way in Golden Gate Park. The #71 and #44 buses stop at the building. The N-Judah, #6, #43, and #66 lines stop within 2 blocks.
Before our programs, we take our speakers to dinner at Chang’s Kitchen, 1030 Irving Street, between 11th and 12th Avenues. Join us for good Chinese food and interesting conversation. Meet at the restaurant at 5:30 pm. RSVP appreciated but not required. If you wish to notify, please call Jake Sigg at 415-731-3028.




August 1, Thursday, 7:30 pm

Insect Apocalypse? Is insect biodiversity and biomass declining? What do the recent studies mean?

Speaker: Dr. Leslie Saul-Gershenz

Dr. Leslie Saul-Gershenz is Associate Director of Research, Wild Energy Initiative of the John Muir Institute of the Environment at UC Davis where she researches native solitary bees and their nest parasites. She will discuss several recent studies that have documented a large decline in insect abundance, biodiversity, and biomass in Europe, Puerto Rico, and California, looking at changes in insect populations over a 30-year period. Each study used different methodologies and pointed to different causes of declines. She will also speak about her current bee study to understand the impact of utility-scale solar energy development in California’s deserts, and look at how activities outside protected areas affect protected areas, such as national parks and reserves. Insects, plants, and underground resources are inseparable within their ecosystems; conservation management policies need to reflect these complex relationships.

Leslie studies the chemical ecology, pollination ecology, and complex parasite-host interactions of solitary native bees and their nest parasites across the western US, including the Mojave Desert, the coastal sand dunes of Oregon, and eastern Washington. She has also collaborated on a bee inventory in the Mojave Desert, providing evidence that this amazing ecosystem is a biological hotspot for both native bees and plants; they found at least 170 species of bees in the intersection between the Mojave and Sonoran Deserts.


Future Program


September 5, Thursday, 7:30 pm

Plants of the Farallon Islands

Speaker: Peter Pyle