Urban Naturalist Classes

In this teeming metropolis we call home, nature is all around us whether we pause to carefully observe it or not. Amaranth springs through the cracks in our sidewalks; migrating warblers rest in our parks; horseshoe crabs scuttle onto our beaches to breed. As a NYBG Urban Naturalist, you will have a unique opportunity to explore these diverse habitats while discovering the keys that unlock their many secrets. Enroll in a course for fun or pursue a Certificate.

Click here for an overview of the Certificate Program.


March

Brooks in Brooklyn? Yep. A river in the Bronx? Sure. Wildlife roaming Manhattan? You bet! Queens and Staten Island too hold stories of incredible ecological wealth and concentrated environmental power. Join author of Mannahatta: A Natural History of New York more...
243NAT214O 03/05 Tu 6:00pm-8:00pm Sanderson, Ph. D
ONLINE

Get a solid grounding in the basic plant body-from the cell to the roots, stems, leaves, flowers, and fruit. We'll use dissecting and compound light microscopes to observe plant anatomy, then introduce the base-level chemistry required to understand the world more...
243BOT315BO 03/06 We 6:00pm-9:00pm Kutos
ONLINE

Discover how trees communicate via chemical signals in the air (to warn of insect attacks) and transfer nutrients to one another through complex underground fungal networks (sometimes to assist sick trees).
243BOT385BO 03/11 Mo 6:30pm-8:30pm Kutos
ONLINE

This is the class for plant-lovers eager to up their game! Learn the terminology and basic botanical nomenclature that will help you recognize and describe key differences in common plants.
243BOT308CO 03/21 Th 5:30pm-7:30pm Holmes
ONLINE

Take a deep dive into the history and modern-day uses of trees found in the tri-state area, from American elm to white pine. On this walk and talk, we will discuss 12 species and how the specific ecology and wood more...
243NAT206 03/29 Fr 2:00pm-5:00pm O'Brien
NYBG

April

With its variety of habitats and position on the Atlantic Flyway, NYC is a bird-lover's paradise! Over 300 distinct resident or migratory species live or pass through here each year, including many nesting species such as Peregrine Falcons, Red-tailed Hawks, more...
244NAT317BL 04/10 We 10:00am-12:00pm Chaya
BLENDED

As the mushroom season awakens, discover how and where to hunt for Oysters, Inky Caps, Wine Caps, Dryad's Saddle, Reishi, and the early spring Chicken Mushroom. Even the elusive Morels occur throughout the metropolitan region, and spring is the ideal more...
244BOT330 04/25 Th 10:00am-1:00pm Sadowski
NYBG

May

This is the class for plant-lovers eager to up their game! Learn the terminology and basic botanical nomenclature that will help you recognize and describe key differences in common plants.
244BOT308AO 05/04 Sa 10:30am-12:30pm Bucuvalas
ONLINE

Take your naturalist game to the next level by learning how to sketch. Drawing asks that you slow down and closely observe what you see, allowing you to identify unfamiliar species and investigate ecological connections. Focusing on trees, you'll learn more...
244NAT400 05/07 Tu 11:00am-1:00pm Leighton
NYBG

June

Learn how to identify this unique order of insects as they take to the skies in early summer. Study their biology, behavior, habitat associations, and conservation efforts currently underway.
244NAT311O 06/03 Mo 6:00pm-8:00pm Wells
ONLINE

Learn to identify native and introduced herbs, ferns, shrubs, and trees as they appear in summer, and get to know plants that may be found in fields, on roadsides, and in woodlands and wetlands. Learn about basic plant structure and more...
244BOT334 06/07 Fr 10:00am-1:00pm Holmes
NYBG

Delve into the fascinating world of the creatures that make up 84% of the Animal Kingdom—what renowned biologist E.O. Wilson once called "the little things that run the world." We'll discuss the roles that insects play—both in maintaining healthy ecosystems more...
244NAT322BL 06/20 Th 10:00am-12:00pm Chaya
BLENDED