Indiana’s natural landscape has changed dramatically over the past 200 years, and yet many people are totally unaware just how much change has occurred. With regard to the environment, we forget what used to be, and our “normal”, our baseline, has shifted from what was normal of our predecessors. Bison, elk, wolves, and even parakeets (now extinct) once occupied our land, as did vast prairies, forests and wetlands. This presentation will focus on “original” Indiana and how it was different from today. The talk aims to help people become aware of how dramatically Indiana’s natural environment has changed since statehood. The ultimate goal is to inspire action to protect the remaining remnants of “original” Indiana.
The address provided will take you to the public entrance and Waiting Station of the Crown Hill Cemetery. From there proceed straight west to the Gothic Chapel where the talk will be held. Please check the Crown Hill Heritage Foundation’s Speaker Series webpage above in early 2024 to register.
Michael Homoya served as Botanist/Plant Ecologist for the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, Division of Nature Preserves for 37 years before retiring in 2019. He has written over 75 scientific papers, popular articles, and books about Indiana’s natural features, including Orchids of Indiana, Wildflowers and Ferns of Indiana Forests: A Field Guide, Wake Up, Woods, and Wildflowers of the Midwest (with co- author Scott Namestnik). Homoya is a Fellow and former president of the Indiana Academy of Science as well as board member and immediate past president of the Indiana Native Plant Society. He is currently an adjunct faculty member in biology at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis and Marian University. In 2019 Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb awarded him the Sagamore of the Wabash for his contributions to preserve Indiana’s natural heritage. Other honors include the Indiana Academy of Science Distinguished Scholar Award, the Distinguished Career Public Service Award from Conservation Law Center, and the Barbara J. Restle Lifetime Conservation Award from Sycamore Land Trust.