Eco-Watch Lecture Series

Gumbo Limbo’s lecture series is celebrating 35 years of Gumbo Limbo Nature Center!  Learn about the past, present, and future of science and conservation.  Attend one or all of Gumbo Limbo Nature Center’s presentations by a guest scientist, author, researcher, or other expert.  Recommended for ages 14 & up.  Children under 18 must be accompanied by an adult.

New this year, hosted by the beautiful Boca Raton Spanish River Library.  Meet on the second floor mezzanine of the library located at 1501 NW Spanish River Boulevard.

Reservations can be made online or by calling 561-544-8615.

If you would like to support the Eco-Watch Lecture Series, please consider making an online donation to Friends of Gumbo Limbo.  Donations cannot be accepted at the event.

Dates and Speakers


Man wearing a blue polo shirt.

March 10
Larry Wood, PhD, Florida Hawksbill Project. 
Jewels on the Reef: The Secret Lives of Hawksbill Turtles.

Dr. Larry Wood has been working with sea turtles in Florida for over 25 years.  His lifelong interest in biology, particularly reptiles, brought him to Juno Beach Florida, where he undertook sea turtle nesting beach surveys, helped develop a sea turtle rehabilitation facility, and created numerous public awareness and marine education programs.  In 2004, he established the Comprehensive Florida Hawksbill Research and Conservation Program, which is the first and only long-term study of hawksbill turtles in Florida.  Dr. Wood has contributed to sea turtle conservation in many ways in Florida and elsewhere through his publications, contributions to symposia, and student/volunteer mentorships.  He is currently pursuing his research and public education interests with the National Save The Sea Turtle Foundation located in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.  Reservations: March 10


smiling woman holding tree branch wearing a hat

March 24
Maria Fadiman, PhD Associate Professor, Florida Atlantic University.  When an Elder Dies, a Library Burns.

Join Dr. Fadiman as she takes you into the Amazon rainforest, the savannas of Africa and to an island in the Caribbean with a National Geographic expedition. In each of these locations she explores the relationship that people have with the plants around them (ethnobotany) and how these cultures keep their forest knowledge alive.  Reservations: March 24


headshot of a man wearing glasses and a suit

April 14
Michael Jenkins, PhD, PE, Principal, Applied Technology & Management. 
Tropical Cyclones – A World and Florida History.

Tropical Cyclones (aka Hurricanes in the Western Hemisphere) are a worldwide phenomenon that have had a profound effect on the history of Florida and the World.  This talk will provide an overview of tropical cyclones and the many ways large, small and at times unexpected they have influenced the course of historic events.  This influence is  particularly relevant to the history of South Florida and the presentation will present a particular focus on how tropical cyclones have shaped our story.

Dr. Michael Jenkins, PhD, PE is Coastal Engineering Principal of Applied Technology and Management, Inc., a Florida-Based Engineering and Science Consulting Firm. He is a graduate of Florida Atlantic University (undergrad and master’s degrees) and received his doctorate in coastal engineering from Florida Institute of Technology.  His professional career has focused on addressing the unique issues of coastal communities within Florida, the southeast US and Caribbean, including an over 20 year involvement with coastal management for the City of Boca Raton.  Reservations: April 14


man wearing a tropical shirt with a sunset in the background

April 28
Paul Davis, Conservation Biologist, Clearwater Marine Aquarium Research Institute
.  Our Plastic Pollution Problem.

Plastics have become an essential part of modern life.  Plastic production has been increasing exponentially over time and improper disposal has become an increasing problem particularly for single use items.  Plastics contamination is now virtually everywhere.  This program will discuss the extent of the problem, its impacts on marine ecosystems and steps individuals can take to address the problem.

Paul Davis works with Clearwater Marine Aquarium as a conservation biologist and manages the Healthy Habitats and Ocean marine debris environmental education program.   The program focuses on marine debris issues and uses a mobile classroom to bring the message to schools and community events.  He also coordinates monthly beach cleanups at Boynton Inlet.

Paul retired as Director of the Environmental Restoration Division of the Palm Beach County Department of Environmental Resources Management (ERM) after 25 years.  He has spent over 40 years measuring and managing our local coastal ecosystems and species.

He conducted sea turtle monitoring and research for 33 years, worked to establish local sea turtle protection ordinances and was responsible for developing and implementing the PBC Manatee Protection Plan.  He developed ecosystem and protected species management planning documents and initiatives which included the monitoring and management of reefs, beaches, dunes, mangroves, seagrass and estuarine communities.   Since retiring he has been volunteering for several environmental organizations including the Audubon Society, The Nature Conservancy, International Dark Sky Association, and Gale Academy of Environmental Science and Technology at Forest Hill High School.  Reservations:  April 28