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Scenes from The University of Rhode Island

Distinguished Journalist and Author to Speak at Metcalf Institute Public Lecture

Media Contact: Lisa Cugini, (401) 874-6642

Narragansett, R.I .-- January 22, 2004 -- Author and award-winning National Public Radio (NPR) science correspondent David Baron will present an illustrated lecture "The Beast in the Garden: Wildlife in America’s Suburbs," based on his recent book The Beast in the Garden: A Modern Parable of Man and Nature.

Sponsored by the Metcalf Institute for Marine and Environmental Reporting, the lecture will take place on Thursday, February 5, at noon in Corless Auditorium, URI Bay Campus, South Ferry Road, Narragansett. A booksigning will follow the presentation.

Baron will talk about the complex relationship between people and wild animals in modern America, as suburbia sprawls out into wildlife habitat and animal populations spread inward. He will tell the compelling true story of what happened in Colorado when mountain lions, rebounding from decades of persecution and bounty hunting, reclaimed their old territories and found homes in what used to be lion habitat. His tale, relevant to New England's problems with deer, coyotes, and bears, reveals the subtle yet powerful ways in which human actions are altering wildlife behavior.

David Baron, visiting scholar at Boston University's Knight Center for Science and Medical Journalism, has reported for NPR for more than 15 years.

Books will be on sale in Corless Auditorium (cash, checks only) and in the Coastal Institute Bookstore for $24.95. For more information call (401) 874-6211 or visit .

The Metcalf Institute was established in 1997 with an endowment from the foundations of three news organizations: A.H. Belo Corporation, owner of the Dallas Morning News and parent company of The Providence Journal, The Providence Journal Company, and the Philip Graham Fund, the foundation of The Washington Post. Additional funding was provided by the Telaka Foundation. The Environmental Reporting Fellowships are funded by The Providence Journal Foundation and the Sharpe Family Foundation. The institute was established with the intent of helping journalists become better informed about science and research and to strengthen communication between journalists and scientists.