ESMN Adds 21 Members

Twenty one students graduated as Eastern Shore of Virginia Master Naturalists after completing the Basic Training Course on November 9th. The course combined classroom instruction and field work throughout the Eastern Shore. Diverse topics were taught by leading experts and including subjects such as barrier island and coastal ecology, botany, mammalogy and others. Class venues included the Barrier Islands Center, Chincoteague Bay Field Station, the Virginia Institute of Marine Science Eastern Shore Laboratory and the UVA Coastal Research Center. Field work locations included the Assateague Island National Seashore, Wallops Island, and the Mutton Hunk Fen, Savage Neck Dunes, and Wreck Island Natural Area Preserves.

Chartered in 2008, the Eastern Shore chapter has over 100 members serving as volunteer educators, citizen scientists, and stewards helping conserve and manage the Eastern Shore’s natural resources and public lands.

In 2023, the chapter contributed over 6,000 hours of volunteer service. The Basic Training Course is typically offered annually each fall. For information about attending, please send an email to

2023 Graduates: Nancy Biegel, Tom Bonniwell, Stella Dawson, Paula Deppen, Abby Gale, Laurel Gould, Rob Harris, Peter Hartzler, Terri Kirtles, Amy Lines, Andrew May, Joan May, Jim McDaniel, Scott Neville, Debbie Pocock, Doug Pocock, Audrey Shirif, Kevin Shive, Pat Tinkelman, Tiara Tracy and Lisa Wu.

The Eastern Shore Master Naturalists wish to especially recognize Andrew May and Kevin Shive, No Limits Eastern Shore Brain Injury Services members, who completed the course this year. Andrew’s mother, Joan May, also graduated this session.