Former science teacher will discuss Westmoreland’s ‘natural areas’ |

Former science teacher will discuss Westmoreland’s ‘natural areas’

Patrick Varine
Submitted photo/AAUW
Dick Byers of Stahlstown will discuss "Natural Areas In and Around Westmoreland County" at a Sept. 12, 2019, presentation at the Murrysville Community Library.
Submitted photo/AAUW
Dick Byers of Stahlstown will discuss "Natural Areas In and Around Westmoreland County" at a Sept. 12, 2019, presentation at the Murrysville Community Library.

Early accounts of life in Westmoreland County don’t give much of a sense of what nature was like for the area’s first settlers.

Retired biology teacher Dick Byers of Stahlstown wanted to ensure that people reading about the area in the future have that knowledge. It’s why Byers, along with a team of volunteer naturalists, put together “Natural Areas In and Around Westmoreland County,” a document of 98 distinct locations within a 35-mile radius of Greensburg.

“We tried to describe what the casual visitor most likely would see and listed the more common species, plus a few rare ones for interest,” Byers said at the book’s release in early 2019. “As the climate changes, so will the vegetation and animal life. Every natural area is different. A record of what the area looked like, before the changes yet to be, is worth keeping.”

That record will be the topic of Byers’ Sept. 12 presentation at the American Association of University Women’s meeting, set for 10:30 a.m. at the Murrysville Community Library’s meeting room.

During his career in education, Byers taught seven summers at the National Audubon Society’s Ecology Workshop in Greenwich, Conn., and is a past president of the Westmoreland Bird and Nature Club.

Reservations are required for the meeting, which will also include a 9:30 a.m. brunch. Guests are welcome but also require a reservation. Email reservations by Sept. 10 to [email protected].

The library is at 4100 Sardis Road in Murrysville. For more, see

Patrick Varine is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Patrick at 724-850-2862, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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