Coastal Naturalist Training – 8-week course

Attention nature lovers and curious nature newbies, registration is open for the Friends of the Dunes Coastal Naturalist Training! The Coastal Naturalist Training is an 8-week course starting on September 9 that will introduce participants to the wonders of our local ecology and engage them in the stewardship of California’s natural communities. Explore the beautiful and diverse coastal ecosystems of the Humboldt Bay region with a group of fellow nature enthusiasts. No previous experience in natural sciences or outdoor exploration is necessary and scholarship funding is available. This course combines a junior college-level introductory science course curriculum with classroom and field experiences, guest lecturers, and project-based learning to immerse students in the natural history of the Humboldt Bay region and coastal dune ecosystem. Guest lecturers and field instructors include professors, geologists, botanists, biologists, long-time naturalists, and other local experts. Upon completion of course requirements, participants will earn a California Naturalist Certificate through the UC California Naturalist Program and are eligible for four UC Davis Continuing and Professional Education academic credits.

The course is designed for community members interested in expanding their knowledge of local coastal ecology, as well as students, teachers, naturalists, and environmental educators seeking professional development. While you may take the course strictly for your enjoyment, the Coastal Naturalist Training will also prepare you to become an active and informed volunteer with Friends of the Dunes or other environmental organizations.

Participants should be able to hike several miles in soft sand while carrying their supplies (field notebook, water, lunch, and snacks). We will be traveling at an easy pace but will be in the field for up to 5 hours per field trip.

Course Times & Locations:

  • Course Dates: September 9 to October 28, 2021

  • Classroom Sessions: Thursday evenings from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Humboldt Coastal Nature Center (or on Zoom depending on COVID restrictions)

  •  Field Sessions: Sunday mornings, typically from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. with some small variations. Locations vary.

Course Fee: $375 or $350 for Friends of the Dunes Members, Peninsula Residents, & students. Additional Optional Fees: Approximately $30 for a kayak rental, $80 for 4 academic credits. Scholarships for course fees are available.

To Register: Register online at, at the Humboldt Coastal Nature Center (220 Stamps Lane in Manila) or contact Suzie at (707) 444-1397 or [email protected]. Please note that proof of vaccination against COVID-19 is required for participation in this course.


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Sep 23 2021


6:00 pm - 8:00 pm