Master Naturalist classes have been offered in Canaan Valley since 2006.
The WV Division of Natural Resources program includes 64 hours of instruction and 30 hours of volunteer work to become a Certified Master Naturalist. Topics of courses include Mammals, Insects, Wildflowers and Weeds, Terrestrial, Aquatic and Wetland Habitats, and Habitat Improvement for Wildlife among many others. Courses involve lecture and usually a field component. The minimum age for the classes is 16.
We need a minimum of 12 people for a class to be held this year in Canaan Valley. The Canaan Valley program has recently been offered in 4 very compressed weekends for people from out of the area to be able to complete the coursework in a minimum number of weekends. Master Naturalist class weekends this year will be April 4 – 6, May 16 – 18, July 11 – 13 and August 1 – 3rd. (The Saturday, May 17th classes will be held in Elkins, WV in conjunction with the Tygart Valley Chapter). Classes are held from 6PM to 9PM on Friday, 8AM to 9PM on Saturday and 8AM to noon on Sunday and are held at the Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge Visitors’ Center on Route 32 in Canaan Valley. Bring your own lunch and dinner. Cost for the program will be between $125 and $150 depending on the number of students. The fee includes a $40 manual from DNR.
If you think you may be interested in the program or have questions, please E-mail me (ADalton2000@yahoo.com) or give me a call 304-866-7037 as soon as possible. A decision will be made by the last week in February if the program will be held. For more information on the program, go to the DNR website www.wvdnr.gov/wvmn/index.shtm or the Advisory Committee’s website www.mnofwv.org. The Tygart Valley Master Naturalists will offer the Master Naturalist program in Elkins again this year on a more relaxed schedule of 2 classes each Saturday once a month for most of the year. If you prefer this format, please contact Tommy Zeitz at 304-866-7418 or tezeitz@aol.