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Trecia E
 Neal
Nature Biologist

Trecia was a biologist at Fernbank Science Center in Atlanta for thirty years, retiring in 2017. Her areas of expertise are ornithology, environmental education, and designing outdoor classrooms and wildlife gardens. Trecia has a bachelor’s degree in biology and a master’s degree in science education with an emphasis in animal behavior.  In 2015 Trecia received the Outstanding Biology Teacher Award for Georgia from the National Association of Biology Teachers in recognition of her career’s work in environmental education.

In 2003 Trecia went to Mexico for the first time and discovered    the   wonders   of   the   monarchs’   migratory phenomena that is currently endangered. She returned to Georgia and began learning as much as possible about the problems that are affecting the monarch population. Trecia has served on the board of Monarch’s Across Georgia (MAG) since 2003 and served as co-chair from 2004-2007, and chair in 2008. Trecia currently serves as the chair of the Pollinator Habitat Certification committee for MAG.  This program has certified 338 gardens since the program started in 2005.

Trecia also served as the Mexico Book Project    chair    from   2004 - 2012.   This  project raises money every year to purchase elementary-level books written in Spanish for students who are taking care of monarch butterflies in Mexico.  Angangueo resident and Journey North correspondent Estella Romero delivers these books along with an environmental lesson each year while she is also delivering the yearly Symbolic Monarchs that have made their migration from citizens all across the United States.

 

From 2004-2014, Trecia and colleagues offered weeklong trips to Mexico for teachers and the public to help educate individuals about the monarchs unique migratory phenomena, and ways that individuals can help support their migration.  In 2005 Trecia became a Monarch Watch Conservation Specialist for Dr. Chip Taylor at Monarch Watch and travels the state as a public speaker on this topic.


Upon retirement, Trecia formed Green Gardens Education and Designs LLC and is now using her expertise and talents to design wildlife gardens for homeowners to help transform their barren lawns to living landscapes full of pollinators, birds and wildlife. She is also in demand as a public speaker on a variety of topics that also includes monarchs, composting, vermicomposting, gardening for pollinators and birds, and the importance of native plants.  Trecia is also a member of the Ecological Landscape Alliance, The Homegrown National Park Network, and Grow Native.
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Trecia was privileged to design a garden at the visitor’s center    in   Plains,   GA   for  First Lady  Rosalyn   Carter. This garden is registered on the Rosalyn Carter Butterfly Trail. Trecia also taught a monarch tagging session in Plains, GA and was able to tag and release monarchs with both President Jimmy Carter and First Lady Rosalyn Carter. Trecia is thrilled to report that one of the First Lady’s monarchs was later recovered in Mexico.

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