New York Times Bestselling author and environmental historian, Dr. Dan Flores, will educate audiences on the 5-million-year-old epic story of the coyote at the Alumni Center Garden Room on Sept. 19 at 7 p.m.
The lecture will be based on his animal biography “Coyote America: A Natural and Supernatural History.” Flores was first intrigued by coyotes as a child in Louisiana when he saw the animal in his neighborhood. Since then, he’s been interested in the coyote’s evolution.
As an author and a historian, Flores hopes his lecture impresses upon people to coexist peacefully with the coyote. Their habitat and population has been decimated by humans through land development, poisonings and sport killings, but still, coyotes are able to reproduce and migrate. Flores compares coyotes’ adaptive traits with the story of human evolution.
Over the last several decades, coyotes have spread from the American West to the whole of the United States, with the exception of Hawaii.
As an advocate, Flores helped pass legislation with Project Coyote, a nonprofit of which he is an ambassador, that is dedicated to promoting “compassionate conservation and coexistence between people and wildlife through education, science and advocacy.”
The group has banned wildlife killing festivals in Vermont and California with hopes that New Mexico will be next.
Flores’ wife and fellow environmental historian, Dr. Sara Dant, Weber History professor and chair, said the lecture will offer offer attendees, “…an opportunity to see how Americans have created various policies related to the animal, how coyotes have appeared in popular culture and the importance of science in understanding the world around us.”
The history of the coyote in Utah will be covered as well. Attendance is free for the public.