Conservation Commission, BEEC present course in community ecology

DUMMERSTON — The Dummerston Conservation Commission and Bonnyvale Environmental Education Center (BEEC) sponsor “How Nature Models Sustainability: An Introduction to Community Ecology” with Tom Wessels.

This four-part series runs from 10 a.m. to noon on Tuesday, Feb. 3, 10, 17, and 24, with a possible snow date of March 31. Participants should meet at The Learning Collaborative, 471 Route 5.

Wessels will discuss the principle of self organization and how it plays out in co-evolved, symbiotic relationships. He says in an event announcement that he will relate this to human systems to develop an understanding for more sustainable models.

Examples will be observed in the field. Participants should bring warm, layered clothing and warm footwear.

Wessels is an ecologist and founding director of the master's degree program in conservation biology at Antioch University New England. He is the former chair of The Center for Whole Communities (, which fosters inclusive communities strongly rooted in place and where all people, regardless of income, race, and background, have access to, and a healthy relationship with, land.

Wessels has conducted landscape-level workshops throughout the United States for more than 30 years. His books include “Reading the Forested Landscape,” “The Granite Landscape,” “Untamed Vermont,” “The Myth of Progress: Toward a Sustainable Future,” and “Forest Forensics: A Field Guide to Reading the Forested Landscape.”

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