top of page

Online Lecture Series

offered virtually via Zoom and free of charge

Upcoming Lectures

THURS
10.12.23
5:30PM

The Charisma of Cowries

By Dr. José H. Leal, Ph.D., Science Director and Curator, Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum

Introduction by Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum Executive Director Sam Ankerson, including an update on the Shell Museum

Leal_Cowrie_EDITED.jpg

Cowries have played significant roles in human culture going back tens of thousands of years. Their shapes, sizes, and colors exert an attraction that knows no geographical or cultural barriers. Cowries have been used as money, ornaments, spiritual objects, and became one the most desired groups of collectible shells in modern times. In this presentation Dr. Leal discusses the biodiversity, geographical distribution, and natural history of cowries, and some of the most remarkable cultural uses of cowrie shells.   

 

José H. Leal, Ph.D. is the Science Director and Curator of the Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum. Dr. Leal received his Ph.D. in Marine Biology and Fisheries from the University of Miami and has served as an Assistant Editor for Sea Frontiers Magazine, a Visiting Professor at the Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle, and Postdoctoral Fellow at the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of Natural History. He holds honorary faculty positions at the University of Miami and Florida Gulf Coast University, is a past president of the American Malacological Society and of Conchologists of America, and is currently editor of The Nautilus journal of malacology.

Recordings of Previous Lectures

2023-10-12

The Charisma of Cowries

By Dr. José H. Leal, Ph.D., Science Director and Curator, Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum

2023-09-14

Renewal: The Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum One Year After Hurricane Ian

By Sam Ankerson, Executive Director, Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum

2023-08-17

The Secret and Endangered Lives of Freshwater Mussels

By Dr. John Pfeiffer, Curator of Bivalvia, Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

2023-07-13

Hawaiian Land Snails: Lessons in Conservation, Curation, and Research

By Dr. Norine Yeung, Malacology Curator, Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum

2023-05-17

Micromollusks: The Allure of Small Size

By José H. Leal, Ph.D., Science Director and Curator, Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum

2023-04-20

The Journey to One Billion Oysters with One Million New Yorkers

By Pete Malinowski, Executive Director of Billion Oyster Project

2023-03-23

Exploring the Oceans for Public Television

By Alexa Elliott, Creator and Producer of PBS Program Changing Seas

2023-02-15

Renovating the George W. Strake Hall of Malacology, From Bottom to Top

By Tina Petway, Associate Curator of Malacology, Houston Museum of Natural Science

2023-01-19

Land Snails in Los Angeles: An Experiment in Urban Citizen Science

By Dr. Jann Elizabeth Vendetti, Associate Curator and Twila Bratcher Chair in Malacology Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County

2022-11-10

Hurricanes and Mollusks

By Dr. José H. Leal, Science Director and Curator
Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum

2022-09-14

Saving the Queen of the Sea: Queen Conch Conservation Aquaculture

By Megan Davis, Ph.D., Research Professor, Aquaculture and Stock Enhancement Program
Florida Atlantic University Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute

2022-08-11

Mobilizing Millions of Mollusks of the Eastern Seaboard

By Rüdiger Bieler, PhD, Curator of Invertebrates
Field Museum of Natural History;
and José H. Leal, PhD, Science Director and Curator
Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum

2022-07-13

Let's Get Kraken: Cephalopods Coast to Coast

By Bret Grasse, Manager of Cephalopod Operations
Marine Biological Laboratories (Woods Hole, MA)

2022-06-16

Spot the Mollusk!

By Rebecca Mensch, Senior Marine Biologist
Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum

2021-10-20

Spooky Mollusks and Other Evils of the Deep: A Halloween Special

By José H. Leal, Ph.D., Science Director and Curator, Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum

2021-09-28

Shell Dressed: Seashells in Fashion and Jewelry

By Jean M. Burks, Curator Emerita, Shelburne Museum, and Kory Rogers, Francie and John Downing Senior Curator of American Art, Shelburne Museum

2021-09-16

Why Am I Growing Giant Clams in the Middle of the Arizona Desert?

By Dan Killam, Ph.D., Biosphere 2, University of Arizona

2021-08-24

8,000 Years of Shells in the American Southeast: Archaeological Insights on the Ecology, Diet, Architecture, and Ritual of Ancient Native Americans

By Kenneth E. Sassaman, Hyatt and Cici Brown Professor of Florida Archaeology, University of Florida

2021-07-27

Supersized Squid

By Rebecca Mensch, Senior Marine Biologist, Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum

2021-07-13

Oysters: A Crystal Ball for Water Quality in Southwest Florida

By Melissa A. May, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Marine Biology, Florida Gulf Coast University

2021-06-29

Curator’s Choice: New Photographs of Extraordinary Shells, and the Digital Imaging Project at the National Shell Museum

By José H. Leal, Ph.D., Science Director and Curator, Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum

2021-06-15

Artistic Adaptations: 2,000 Years of Seashells in Art

By Jean M. Burks, Curator Emerita, Shelburne Museum, and Kory Rogers, Francie and John Downing Senior Curator of American Art, Shelburne Museum

2021-04-22

Blue Revolution:
A Water Ethic for America and Florida

By Cynthia Barnett, Award-Winning Environmental Journalist

2021-03-25

Shells and Bad Water:
Ocean Acidification and its Effects on Mollusks​

By José H. Leal, Ph.D., Science Director and Curator, Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum

2021-02-25

Southwest Florida's Water Quality Challenges and the Urgent Need to Complete Everglades Restoration

By James Evans, Environmental Policy Director, Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation

bottom of page