Ames Plantation is home to many educational programs in forestry and wildlife biology. People come singly or in groups that range from high school students to teachers to forestry and wildlife students to professional foresters and wildlife biologists. People come here from all over the world. Students or technicians who come to Ames often stay for extended periods. It is not unusual for students to be in residence at Ames for several days, and often they stay for weeks or months as long as a year. Technicians, working on specific projects, may be in residence for several years. Ames has two small “dormitories,” that are located in houses, one for men and another for women. And, it is not unusual for Ames personnel to travel to other places to conduct educational activities.
University of Tennessee veterinarian students spend 1 week at Ames learning about livestock. These student groups come here 4 times per year. Each group receives an overview of all forestry and wildlife research and management efforts ongoing at Ames. Having the chance to see wildlife research is valuable to students who will make their living working with animals and, because they will be expected by the public to know about animals, must often comment on issues involving wildlife.
During the early part of the year the Director of the Ames Forestry and Wildlife program was invited to speak at local Rotary and Chamber of Commerce clubs. It is a way to keep the community abreast of events and these groups are enthusiastic to learn about what is going on at Ames.
Several times during the first half of the year, Ames personnel had the chance to visit the Larry Rea radio show on to discuss various programs that are ongoing at Ames.
The Biennial Southern Silvicultural Research Conference was held in Memphis from February 28 – March 3, 2005. This meeting is one of the most prestigious forestry meetings in the Nation and is held every-other year. Scientists, professions and students come from all over the South and also Nationally to attend the weeklong Conference where research findings are presented. Nearly 400 people attended the Conference. This year the group elected to visit Ames to observe the research efforts. A field tour, which was limited to 50 people, was quickly filled. This number represented one of the largest field tours ever conducted in the history of the Conference. The group visited Ames on March 3, for an all day tour of forestry and wildlife research.
The University of Tennessee Department of Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries conducted inservice training for Extension personnel on March 8-9. Agents spent time learning about forestry and wildlife issues and also to gain the knowledge needed to train young 4-H students so that they could successfully compete in forestry and wildlife judging events.
A group of students attending a Wetlands Ecology and Management course spent a day at Ames on March 15. The students were enrolled at the University of Tennessee and came from the Department of Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries. The group was able to observe a number of eco-systems and also to visit with the Ames Director of Forestry and Wildlife.
The Ames Forestry and Wildlife scientist attended the Tennessee Wildlife Society Meeting on March 17 to deliver an update on the Quail management Program at Ames. Statewide wildlife professionals and students attend the meeting.
The Director of Forestry and Wildlife was able to attend the Memphis Lumberman’s Education Foundation meeting on April 14, where an overview of the Teacher’s Conservation Workshop was given. The Foundation is an offshoot of the Lumberman’s Club of Memphis and is dedicated to providing sound information about forests and forestry to the general public. One of the programs that they support is the Teacher’s Conservation Workshop held partially on Ames every year.
The Director of Forestry and Wildlife attended the Mississippi Teachers Conference on May 24 to deliver lectures and field tours. About 50 teachers attended the conference.
On May 8-9, a group of students and Professors from the Kasetsart University, Thailand were in residence at Ames. The group was able to see forestry and wildlife projects along with an overview of the entire Ames Program. The Thai group has been coming to Ames for several years and each year different students and professors are involved. In 1995 the Ames Director of Forestry and Wildlife was able to visit Thailand for 21 days hosted by faculty at the Kasetsart University.
From June 5 through the 10th, fifteen young people, ranging in age from 10 to 16, were in residence at Ames. This was part of an annual camp sponsored by Quail Unlimited. During the course of the week these youngsters were able to complete hunter safety, learned how to safely paddle a canoe on a river, how to shoot clay targets, photography and a long list of things that relate to wildlife management. Of course, being on the grounds of the National Championship for all-age bird dogs, they were able to learn a great deal about quail biology and management. They also spent time learning about quail telemetry.
Union University students attended Ames on June 11, for tours on forestry and wildlife.