Master naturalist Glenn Olsen considers native plant species that distinguish the 10 ecological zones of Texas, why flora and fauna vary from region to region and how common, rare and endangered plants and animals sustain one another as an ecosystem.
From the Big Thicket to Big Bend, Texas is one of the most biologically diverse states in the country. More than 4,500 species of plants, 28,000 species of insects, 600 species of birds and 181 species of mammals live in the 10 ecological zones of Texas. Master naturalist Glenn Olsen shares an overview of key native plant species that distinguish each region, including East Texas’ stately pine forests; the cactus-strewn Chihuahuan desert of Big Bend; the subtropical Lower Rio Grande Valley; the windswept grassland plains of the Panhandle; and more. Learn about the distinct characteristics of each zone, why the flora and fauna vary from region to region and how common, rare and endangered plants and animals sustain one another as an ecosystem. The class also includes an in-depth look at the abundant opportunities to connect with nature in our own coastal area.
Glenn Olsen has taught for Houston Audubon Society and formerly served as its vice president of education. He has also provided nature education for the Garden Club of Houston, the Katy Prairie Conservancy, the Master Naturalist Program and various nature organizations. Mr. Olsen leads birding and nature tours in the U.S. and Central and South America to explore temperate and tropical ecosystems. He also periodically contributes articles to the Houston Chronicle. Mr. Olsen has completed the Master Gardener Program, the Master Naturalist Program and is past president of the Native Plant Society of Texas.