“The Golden Eagle is the most powerful aerial predator in North America, capable of killing animals as formidable as deer and wolves,” according to Dr. Charles R. Preston of the Buffalo Bill Center of the West’s Draper Natural History Museum. “But while the eagle’s diet varies significantly across its range,” notes Preston, “in the sagebrush country of Wyoming’s Bighorn Basin, cottontail rabbits drive eagle reproduction and success.”
Preston, the Willis McDonald IV Senior Curator of Natural Science and Founding Curator-in-Charge of the Draper, presents The Eagle and the Rabbit—Predator and Prey in the Sagebrush Sea at the next Draper Museum Lunchtime Expedition. The free lecture takes place Thursday, May 3, 12:15 p.m. in the Center of the West’s Coe Auditorium.
Preston emphasizes the importance of understanding the predator-prey relationship between golden eagles and rabbits to manage wildlife communities in the shrub-steppe environments around the globe. In his talk, he says, “We’ll learn how the great eagle’s lifestyle in the Bighorn Basin compares with other regions across the western United States.”
Trained as a wildlife ecologist, Preston is widely recognized as a leading authority on wildlife and human dimensions of wildlife management in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. In addition to Greater Yellowstone, he has conducted fieldwork through much of North, Central, and South America, including the Galapagos Islands.
Previously, Preston was Chairman of the Department of Zoology at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science and Associate Professor of Biology at the University of Arkansas, Little Rock. He holds or has held adjunct faculty appointments in the Haub School for Environment and Natural Resources, University of Wyoming; Biology and Environmental Science at the University of Colorado (Boulder and Denver); Environmental Policy and Management at the University of Denver; and Biological Sciences at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville.
The Lunchtime Expedition lecture series is organized by the Draper Natural History Museum and supported in part by Sage Creek Ranch and the Nancy-Carroll Draper Foundation. Learn more about the Center’s natural science programs at centerofthewest.org/explore/greater-yellowstone-natural-history, or contact Bonnie Smith at [email protected] or 307-578-4020.
The next talk in the series takes place June 7, when Brian Woodbridge presents From Sagebrush Sea to Pacific Ocean: Golden Eagle Conservation in the Big Picture. The golden eagle-themed series coincides with the June 10 opening of a new Draper Museum permanent exhibition, Monarch of the Skies: The Golden Eagle in Greater Yellowstone and the American West.
Find the Center’s full calendar of events at centerofthewest.org/calendar.
Since 1917, the award-winning Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody, Wyoming, has devoted itself to sharing the story of the authentic American West. The Center is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution. For more information, visit centerofthewest.org or the Center’s Facebook page. #100YearsMore
Contact: Bonnie Smith at [email protected] or 307-578-4020.