Posted by: Sandy Steinman | April 9, 2023

Western Sword Ferns and reports of Die-off 4/13/23

from Yerba Buena CNPS

Western Sword Ferns and reports of Die-off

Thursday April 13, 2023  7:30 PM Speaker: Dr. Tim Billo

Zoom Reservation Required: Link Here

The mystery is not yet solved!  Dr. Billo has been tracking a botanical disaster. For several years, sword ferns in an area of Seward Park WA had been dying, and the problem was getting worse.  He continues to work with a team of scientists and community activists to unravel the issue and will summarize the results of the large ongoing collaborative effort in Seward Park and other sites around the region.

He’ll review the multiple etiologies that have been explored and share the hypotheses the research team has developed.  He will also share the team’s ongoing experimental work testing hypotheses and restoration solutions.  Finally, Dr. Billo will place this challenge in the context of anthropogenic climate change and other human pressures.

Tim Billo is a lecturer with the University of Washington Program on the Environment. The focus of his position is undergraduate teaching. He teaches a wide range of interdisciplinary courses, often centered around field studies and natural history. Dr. Billo’s PhD is in biology, with a specialty in bird behavior and evolution, with much of his research taking place in lowland tropical rainforests of Central America. With a lifelong interest in plants, however, and two small children at home, he welcomed the opportunity to work on the sword fern die-off problem affecting Seward Park, a field site in his own neighborhood!

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