Monthly Meeting: March 8, 2018, Arkansas Bats

Blake Sasse, AGFC Nongame Mammal Program Leader


White-nose Syndrome, a fatal fungal disease that is causing massive bat mortality across the eastern US, has been confirmed in Arkansas. Blake Sasse will discuss the ecology and management of bats in the state and the impact that White-nose Syndrome has had on bat populations.  

Blake has been the Nongame Mammal Program Leader for the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission since the position’s inception in 2000. He received his B.S. in Wildlife Management from the University of Missouri in 1991 and his M.S. in Wildlife Management from the University of New Hampshire in 1995. He worked for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission as a wildlife area manager from 1996-1999. Blake focuses his work on the management of endangered bats, but also works with other nongame mammals and furbearing mammals.

Monthly Meeting: February 8, 2018 – Private Land Conservation Programs & Projects

Amanda Mathis, Assistant State Conservationist for Partnerships, NRCS

Because so much of Arkansas’s land is privately owned, private landowners have a large role to play in environmental conservation. The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) helps private landowners with taking measures to conserve their soil, water, and wildlife. Amanda Mathis will provide an overview of these conservation programs and the environmental benefits achieved through voluntary conservation efforts across Arkansas.

Amanda Mathis began her career with NRCS in 2004, and has served in various positions including District Conservationist in Carroll and White Counties. She currently serves as the Assistant State Conservationist for Partnerships, where she works with conservation partners (such as Audubon Arkansas) to provide information on conservation programs and issues, and enhance collaborative efforts to achieve common conservation goals. Amanda leads the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) and the Mississippi River Basin Initiative (MRBI) for the state. She holds a B.S. in Conservation and Wildlife Management from College of the Ozarks in Point Lookout, MO, and a M.S. in Crop, Soil, and Environmental Sciences from the University of Arkansas. She and her husband reside on a small cow-calf operation in White County.