Hands-on education offered through the Mississippi Master Naturalist Program

By: Eric Sparks / Published: Aug 17,  2016

Adults interested in conserving and maintaining our natural resources can get in-depth education and certification through an eight-week course.

The Mississippi State University (MSU) Extension Service and Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium will host the Coastal Mississippi Master Naturalist Program from Sept. 2 to Oct. 21.

Participants will meet once a week from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. to learn basic principles of natural resource ecology and management through classroom instruction, field activities and team exercises.

Experts and scientists from multiple agencies will lead studies of birds, fish, insects, soils, native plants, forest ecology, land use management, wildlife management, coastal habitats and invasive species. Planned excursions include trips to the MSU Crosby Arboretum, Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve and DeSoto National Forest, as well as an all-day boat trip in the Mississippi Sound and Gulf of Mexico.

The program is limited to 25 participants. A $200 course fee covers field trips and materials.

The registration deadline is August 24th!

There are many other reasons to become a Master Naturalist and they are outlined at

For more information, visit

To register, contact program leader Eric Sparks, an assistant professor with the MSU Extension Service and coastal ecology specialist with the Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium, at or 228-546-1025.


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