Central Arkansas is where it all began! In 2006, at Pinnacle Mountain State Park, a need met a solution. The need: trained volunteers who could help supplement the work of the Park Interpreters. The solution: a recently relocated Texas Master Naturalist, Tom Neale. Together the park personnel and Tom created a training program, recruited the first class, and launched the program that has grown to encompass much of the state of Arkansas and has provided thousands of hours of volunteer support to state parks as well as dozens of other agencies and entities.
For 16 years, CAMN members have been stewards of the natural areas in Central Arkansas. We have educated the public and introduced kids to the wonders of nature and the responsibility we all share in caring for it. We've built trails, provided housing for birds, monitored the quality of rivers and lakes, picked up litter, removed invasive species, grown and planted native plants, and provided educated citizen scientists. We've worked hard and we've had fun. And the Natural State has benefitted from it all. Come see what we do!
CAMN Master Project List Jan 2023
To develop a corps of well-informed volunteers to provide education, outreach, and service
dedicated to the beneficial management of natural resources and natural areas within their communities.
Donations made to a specific project will be used only for that project. If a project ends with remaining funds, those funds will be placed in the General Project Fund and used for other CAMN projects.
Land Steward Application and Pledge
It takes 6-9,000 caterpillars to raise one clutch of chickadee babies.
Arkansas Wild Spaces
Photos provided by Native Gardener, Lynn Foster
We started this column because the pandemic was preventing us from meeting the members of the CAMN Board. Now, however, we are doing more in person these days and we've covered almost everyone on the board. We've considered dropping this feature, but we have received good feedback from readers about it and how much fun it is to read the "back story" of a fellow CAMN member. So we decided to continue the column, shifting the focus away from the board and out to the real Movers and Shakers of the organization!
Getting to Know
Let me start off by saying I haven’t always been gentlemanly and distinguished looking as folks thought I was. After a 42 year career in the Army, I went rogue.
Going back further, I was born in Iowa, a country boy. Mom was a French immigrant and Dad was a WW II vet. I was the oldest of 6 boys. Chaos in that house. Went to Iowa State in Fisheries and Wildlife biology (1970) then got in the Army cuz they weren’t paying biologists but $4800 a year. Was enlisted at first (up to Staff Sergeant) then officer, then retired as a Colonel. More degrees. 3 sons. 2 grands. One too many wives. That’s past. Next, the present.
I have four influencers in CAMN. No last names are necessary. They are Bert, Bill, Reed and I like to say Mother Deckard cuz she’s a mother to all of us. Keeps us straight. So Bill says come and teach Camo in Nature at the Jr. Naturalist Camp. I said OK in my sniper/Gilley suit.
Then Bert said you’d be perfect for playing in the dirt on trail maintenance.
I said OK again as I played in the dirt back in Iowa and liked it.
Reed told me I needed to dip my hands in the muck and the mud of Fourche Creek and dig out other’s garbage.
Well, OK. Mother Deckard told me not to listen to any of the three. Sorry Mom. Too late.
So this is what a biologist does some 50 years later. Okaaaaay! And it has been great ever since.
Donations as memorials, to honor a CAMN member, or simply to support the work of the chapter.
CAMN Remote Learning Resources