The Desert Tortoise Council Newsletter
OUR 23rd YEAR
Our Goal: To assure the continued survival of viable populations of the desert tortoise throughout its range.
1999 DESERT TORTOISE COUNCIL SYMPOSIUM NEWS
Registration begins at 8:00 a.m. Friday, March 5, 1999, with the first presentation beginning at a time yet to be determined. Arrangements are being made for multiple field trips and we are looking forward to learning more about this very special area which hosts the smallest Mojave desert tortoise recovery unit, the first Federally listed population of desert tortoises, and the first ever well-studied population of tortoises (Woodbury and Hardy) on the Beaver Dam Slope.
We have reserved the Holiday Inn, St. George, hotel meeting rooms for Friday, March 5, 1999, through Sunday, March 7, 1999. The Holiday Inn Resort Hotel - St. George Convention Center, 850 South Bluff St., St. George, Utah 84770, (800) 457-9800, (435) 628-4235, (435) 628-8157 Fax, email:: firstname.lastname@example.org -web site: www . infowest. com/holidayinn. Interstate 15 runs right through St. George, in the southwest corner of Utah, and Las Vegas has very reasonable air fares for those not intending to drive all the way. Shuttle service from McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas is available through Autobus Shuttle at 1-800-5009786, and from the St. George Airport via the Holiday Inn shuttle. From Salt Lake City, drive south on I-15 about 5 hours. Turn north at the Bluff Street exit and go about one mile north on Bluff Street. The Holiday Inn is on the west side of Bluff Street across from Albertson's.
We have 80 rooms blocked for the event, including Thursday, March
4; through Sunday night, March 7. Rooms rates are $70.00, single
or double, which will exceed Federal lodging rates. Rooms include
cable TV with HBO and ESPN, coffee makers, hair dryers, data ports,
irons with ironing boards, queen or king beds. Facilities include
indoor/outdoor heated pool, billiards, table tennis, children's
play area, fitness room, guest laundry, tennis court and putting
green, video arcade, and gift shop. Within walking distance are
two shopping centers, many restaurants, six movie theaters, and
a driving range. Just a short drive away are the Zion Factory
Outlets, Red Cliffs Mall, Zion National Park, Snow Canyon State
Park, and Tuacahn center for the arts.
The special block of rooms will not be available after February 5, 1999. DON'T PROCRASTINATE, make your reservations now. Mention you are with the Desert Tortoise Council for the special rate. For more information call Tim Duck at 435-688-3238 or email at tduck@az. blm. gov.
We are offering a limited number of students free or reduced registration in exchange for a reasonable amount of assistance during the symposium. Contact Tim Duck at 435-688-3238 (email email@example.com) or Ann McLuckie at 435-688- 1426.
EXHIBITS AND VENDOR'S BOOTHS--1999
Our space manager for exhibits and vendors booths this year is Bob Keeran. Please contact him for rules and to define your needs for space and equipment. Availability will be on a first come, first-served basis. Register with Bob at least 30 days prior to the Symposium. Bob can be reached at 760- 245-8362 or fax at 760-2451071. Due to a previous commitment made by the hotel for another function, the vendor space will only be available for Friday and Saturday.
Vendors or exhibitors wishing to display on Sunday will be provided an alternative location within the hotel.
1999 FIELD TRIPS PLANNED IN THE ST. GEORGE AREA
Monday, March 8, 1999 will promise a splendid variety of field trip possibilities. Four separate trips are in planning stages:
1. Desert Tortoise Fire Ecology Study, led by Todd Esque, at the
Pakoon Basin on the Arizona Strip. This long day trip will include
effects of fire on wildlife including desert tortoises, fire ecology,
alien plants, and the status of research. The research includes
experimental manipulation of desert habitats to understand mechanisms
of habitat change with disturbance by fire.
ANNUAL BUSINESS MEETING
The 24th annual Desert Tortoise Council business meeting will be held at 8:00 a.m., Friday, March 5, at the Holiday Inn in St. George. Among other annual business activities, officers will be nominated and elected for several positions. All Council members are invited to attend the business meeting.
NEW OFFICERS ELECTED AT 1998 BUSINESS MEETING
The Corresponding Secretary position was filled by Ed LaRue, Jr. Katherine Zander and Tim Duck volunteered to run again and were reelected to their positions as Senior Co- chair and Junior Co-chair. Due to resignations of the Cochair elect and Treasurer, the board appointed Mike Coffeen Treasurer and Marc Graff Cochair- elect, at the July 18, 1998 board meeting, following the protocol detailed in the bylaws.
ONGOING COUNCIL PROJECTS
This summer, your Council representatives
_ are providing comments on a variety of agency projects affecting
the desert tortoise, including the West Mojave Plan.
1998 SYMPOSIUM PHOTO CONTEST RESULTS
EARLY ALERT FOR SONORAN DESERT HERP SYMPOSIUM
Mike Demlong of the Phoenix Zoo reports they are planning a symposium on April 9-10 1999 entitled "Current Research on Herpetofauna of the Sonoran Desert." It will be held at the zoo and Dr. Harry Greene is the keynote speaker. Dr. Cecil Schwalbe is the banquet speaker. Dr. Roger Conant will attend, health permitting. Registration is a mere $35.00, including the banquet. For more information you can e-mail Mike Demlong at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SYMPOSIUM ON STATUS AND CONSERVATION OF FLORIDA TURTLES
The Second symposium on the status and conservation of Florida turtles will be held at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida on October 8-11, 1999. This symposium will address the problems faced by Florida turtle species as well as conservation strategies and specific recovery solutions. A volume describing the conservation biology of Florida turtles at the end of the 20th century is planned. Anyone wishing to contribute to one or more species accounts is asked to contact Peter Meylan at < email@example.com > . For more information, contact the Gopher Tortoise Council, c/o George L. Heinrich, 1223 Alhambra Way S., St. Petersburg, FL 337054620, (813)865-6255, e-mail: < firstname.lastname@example.org > .
SYMPOSIUM PHOTO CONTEST
Along with our new print and voting format, we hope to have a mix of old and new faces as winners. First Place winners win $25.00 and Best of Show wins an extra $25.00.
We will accept mounted prints this year, not slides. This will allow attendees to view the photos and vote on their favorites. ENTRY DEADLINE IS 12:00 noon, MARCH 5, 1999. The Council is sponsoring the annual contest to honor and encourage our members to participate in educating the public through photography.
AWARDS: Qualified winners will be awarded first, second, and third place ribbons in each category and a best of show plaque will be awarded. All first place winners will receive $25 and the best of show an additional $25. (The increase from $20 to $25 is to make up for the added costs of the Prints.)
1. WILD DESERT TORTOISES
2. CAPTIVE (PET) DESERT TORTOISES
3. OTHER DESERT REPTILES
4. DESERT MAMMALS
5. OTHER DESERT WILDLIFE
6. WILD DESERT PLANTS
7. DESERT SCENICS
8. TORTOISE CONSERVATION
RULES: With the exception of Captive (Pet) Tortoises, all PRINTS must
be taken of WILD (i.e., unrestrained and photographed in its natural
habitat) subjects occurring within the geographic range of the
desert tortoise. Prints may be either color or black and white
and must be mounted. Each contestant may submit a maximum of two
PRINTS per category. Photos must have been taken by the contestant
and will be judged at the Symposium by the attendees.