Birds; Their Side of the Story...

How did our best-known birds earn that distinction? What are some of the crazy things they make us do? Why are there so many pigeons in cities? What did Ben Franklin really think about Bald Eagles? 

John shares light-hearted stories of birds and bird watching - from cuisine to cartoons; ornaments to icons, murmurs to murders. You'll be given a whole new look at the avian friends we so admire (and some, not so much...)

Butterflies & Their Gardens*


This popular presentation answers many of the questions that are asked about the lives, and preferences, of this fascinating group of insects.  The photos were taken in and around my home state of Connecticut and are used to illustrate the show.  

Some topics covered are; butterfly families and species, life cycles, finding butterflies, and creating butterfly habitats.  

There is also a fun section on moths, "cousins" of the butterflies. These beneficial insects enjoy a wide range of aesthetic forms and colors. They truly are "jewels in your own backyard". 
About the presentor:

John Himmelman is an author, illustrator, naturalist, and popular lecturer.  He is a co-founder of the CT Butterfly Association, past president of the New Haven Bird Club, past president of The Nature Connection and past president of the Killingworth Land Trust.  He has lectured and led many trips afield in search of various flora and fauna throughout the country for over 25 years.  

Himmelman has written and illustrated many books for adults and children on a wide variety of natural history subjects. Books may be available for purchase and signing on the date of the visit.


Below are some of his titles that may be available on the day/evening of the presentation:
Cost: $300 in CT (no extra travel fee) - if outside of CT, expenses added - contact me.  

Please provide a table for setting up books and an extension cord.
*Butterfly Neighbors 
(15 min. gardening section in "Butterflies & Their Gardens" replaced with more moths and butterfly stories)

This program introduces to a mixed audience the butterflies and moths in their area.  Photos of the subjects accompany stories about: survival and subtrefuge; finding them, and helping them find you; taming the wild butterfly; who's in your yard right now?  
Insects & Their Amazing Stories!

It's tough being a bug.  Scores of other animals want to eat you.  The cold is your mortal enemy.  No matter how tiny you are, you need to find others of your kind in this great big world.   And you have very little time in which to accomplish what you need to in your brief journey on this planet.

But these hardships have made the insects very good at what they do.  

This presentation will give us some insight into the remarkable adaptations these creatures have developed in order to survive. Hear the stories of dragonflies and bumblebees; ladybugs and dung beetles. What's the difference between a bee and a wasp - who has the worst sting? And much more.

Singing Leaves: The Songs & Stories of Crickets and Katydids

It begins in April with the calling of the Spring Field Crickets. By late summer the night chorus of insects has reached its crescendo, dominating the aural tapestry of field, yard and forest. The songs then fade gradually until we're left with the lone sputtery trill of the Carolina Cricket playing us into winter...

This presentation introduces the audience to the creators of the insect symphony we have all heard since childhood. It is illustrated with Himmelman's photos, and accompanied by his recordings made in the field and studio

And stories of adventure abound!
Discovering Amphibians: Frogs & Salamanders of the Northeast

On the first warm rainy spring/late winter evening, Spotted Salamanders leave the ground by the thousands and migrate to nearby ponds to mate. They are accompanied by a cadre of other amphibians, who fill the ponds with song and amore.  

This begins the program. Photos taken by the presenter, representing most of the New England amphibians, accompany recordings of frog calls, tips on finding frogs and salamanders, and stories of their life cycles in relation to the changing of the seasons.


All of the Powerpoint programs below run just under 60 minutes, with some time afterwards for Q&A and book-signing. They are fun and light-hearted, but educational, and are illustrated with photos of the subjects taken in the wild. The topics are an introduction to the titled creatures and the program are geared toward the general public. It is my hope in doing these presentations that the audience will take away the desire to learn more about the wild things in their own little part of the world.
John Himmelman's Natural History Programs
~ garden clubs ~ land trusts ~ libraries ~ nature centers  ~ senior centers ~ audubon clubs  ~ nature clubs ~
Some non-natural history themed kids' books that may be available for sale/signing: