NEXT MEETING INFOTopic: Monday, February 22, 2021, at 7 pm. meeting: Exploring a Tropical Paradise: Cuba and Its Fantastic Biodiversity by Marc C. Minno, Ph. D. Join Zoom Meeting
Since 2011 I have been working with volunteers and Cuban scientists to explore Cuba's extraordinary natural areas, document flora and fauna, and assess the conservation needs of the rarest butterflies. Cuba has some plant communities that are similar to those in South Florida including mangrove swamps, freshwater marshes, and dry tropical forests, but others have no equivalent such as savannas, scrubs, and pinelands on serpentine soils, moist tropical forests in the mountains, and arid, rocky shrublands. The island is one of the world's biodiversity hotspots with many endemic plants and animals. At least 210 different kinds of butterflies have been reported from Cuba and about 40% are unique to the island. Butterflies are often good at dispersing and there is exchange with Mexico, Hispaniola, south Florida, and other widely separated places. This presentation will give an overview of Cuban culture, landscapes, and biodiversity.
Dr. Marc Minno-Bio Dr. Minno has a Ph.D. in zoology and more than 30 years of professional experience as an interdisciplinary scientist. He is currently a Water Resource Coordinator with the Suwannee River Water Management District in Live Oak, Florida. Marc and Maria Minno also work on plant and butterfly projects throughout Florida via Eco-Cognizant, Inc., their home-based consulting business. In addition to his many years of experience with wetlands, Dr. Minno is keenly interested in conservation biology and has conducted field research throughout the US and in Central America, South America, Caribbean, Europe, and India. Since 2011 Dr. Minno has been working with biologists in Cuba to better understand the ecological relationships of imperiled butterflies in southern Florida. He has authored/ coauthored six books and six book chapters on butterflies and plants.