📷 Dale Monette will present a selection of his nature photography and the stories behind the shots at Jacob Edwards Library Oct. 18.
By Sarah Champagne, Managing Editor
SOUTHBRIDGE – 2018 is The Year of the Bird; that’s the designation given by National Geographic to mark the 100-year anniversary of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, which the organization describes as “the most powerful and important bird-protection law ever passed.” The Year of the Bird brings several organizations together for a public awareness campaign to celebrate the role of birds in the ecosystem along with their biological value and beauty.
To celebrate, Dale Monette will present a selection of his nature photography at Jacob Edwards Library, Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018 at 6:30 p.m. Monette is returning to the library; he gave a presentation in September 2017 to introduce his book, Secret Lives of the the Quabbin Watershed. In that presentation, he showed images from his photography collection, capturing a wide range of animals including moose, coyotes, bobcats, otters, loons, herons and other animals that roam the area but are rarely seen. Most of Monette’s photography can be seen at NorthQuabbinPhotography.com.
It is Monette’s careful wait in the woods of Quabbin that allows him to catch rare sightings and share it with others. He sometimes waits up to five hours to get the perfect shot of whatever wildlife might appear in a quiet moment. His skill with the camera allows him to seize on those moments and translate them into striking images for others to enjoy.
This year’s presentation focuses on avian life at the Quabbin reservoir. Monette worked for decades for the Department of Conservation and Recreation at Quabbin Reservoir as a naturalist and an educator before retiring in 2014. In the 1980s, he was involved in the well-publicized reintroduction of bald eagles into Massachusetts that took place at Quabbin. At the time, he was a student at UMass and an employee of MassWildlife. The bald eagle had almost disappeared from the area. The success of that project in reintroducing bald eagles to the local environment lasts up to today. Monette says that there are now almost 60 nesting eagles in Massachusetts which are direct descendants of that program.
Monette will also talk about his work to preserve populations of loons, which are not found south of the Quabbin Reservoir. Throughout the presentation, Monette will show striking images he has caught of bald eagles, loons, egrets, herons, owls, songbirds and more.
Secret Lives of the Quabbin Watershed, the book of Monette’s photographs published last year, will be available for purchase at the event at a price of $29.99. Birds in 2018: An Homage with Dale Monette will be presented at Jacob Edwards Library, 236 Main Street, Southbridge from 6:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 18. This event is presented by the Friends of the Jacob Edwards Library in conjunction with The Last Green Valley Walktober series.