Jay L. Keller Curator

** Taking a bit of a hiatus from iNaturalist for a while. **

I am a financial services professional based in southern California by trade, but my lifelong passion for study of the natural world has culminated into what I consider to be a parallel career as a naturalist and wildlife photographer. In an effort to contribute as much as possible to our understanding of the natural world, I spend an inordinate amount of time documenting everything that flowers, slithers, walks, swims and flies.

My enthusiasm for nature began at about age 8 with a keen interest in nature, especially scarab beetles and other insects. By age 13 I was leading tours and assisting with the cataloguing large portions of the Pennsylvania State University's collection and leading public tours at the Frost Entomological Museum, culminating with my own 8,000 specimen collection by age 15 and publishing some discoveries. I transitioned my interest primarily to ornithology in my teens, later setting various Big Day/Month/Year records, starting a new CBC and leading dozens of walks. As an undergraduate at Penn State in the late 90s, I contributed to various turfgrass research initiatives dealing with soil amendments, bentgrass morphogenesis and others (see pubs below). In the past few years, I extended my PSU agronomic experience to finally tackle the challenging broader field of botany, which in many ways dominates my biological surveying.

As far as my observations submitted here, I do the best I can with identifications - especially with less familiar taxa - so please don't expect perfection and correct me when needed. That said, if I have submitted an observation to species and you disagree with it without any explanation or reasoning, I will likely not adjust it. Thanks!

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Publications, Volunteerism and Accolades

1992 Daily Collegian Newspaper article citing my volunteerism at the Frost Entomological Museum:
http://www.collegian.psu.edu/arts_and_entertainment/article_dd3cf442-216a-56f0-81d5-b509f427f54e.html

Conservation of Virginia's Merrimac Farm:
http://www.pwconserve.org/issues/conservation/merrimacfarm/

Creeping Bentgrass Morphogenesis and Competition (1);
Valuation of an athletic field root-zone amended with DuPont shredded carpet (2)
http://plantscience.psu.edu/research/centers/turf/research/annual-reports/1999ARR.pdf

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