ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Dan Dourson is a biologist/naturalist/illustrator who has spent most of his adult life dedicated to the preservation, conservation, and understanding of the planet’s more obscure plants and animals. For nearly twenty years, he worked with the US Forest Service, as a wildlife biologist specializing in non-game management in Red River Gorge. Dan worked extensively with White-haired goldenrod conservation and recovery efforts for the US Forest Service. He was a co-facilitator, a field leader and occasional speaker of the Annual Wildflower Weekend at Natural Bridge State Resort Park for more than 25 years. Dan also was a field leader for the Great Smoky Mountains Wildflower Pilgrimage and numerous other plant-related surveys and workshops. In addition, Dan has spent more than 25 years studying land snails in the eastern United States, Central America, and in the Amazon Jungle of northwestern Peru. Dan was one of two lead investigators on a 2016 National Geographic Expedition into the Maya Mountains of Belize, studying a bottom up relationship between land snails and harpy eagles. He has described 9 new land snail species from the US and 18 new species from Belize, Central America. Dan is the author of ten Natural History books including Wild Yet Tasty, Biodiversity of the Maya Mountains, Belize, Central America, three land snail field guides land snails of Kentucky, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Southern Appalachians, and West Virginia and recently completed a field guide to the land snails of Belize. He has illustrated nature books and Wildflowers and Ferns of Kentucky, How Snakes Work, and multiple environmental posters used in schools around Kentucky. Dan and Judy man- aged a Biological Field Station called BFREE (Belize Foundation for Research and Environmental Education) for 7 years in the wild jungles of Central America.
Judy Dourson is an educator/researcher/field technician/editor. She has participated in the annual Wildflower Weekend at Natural Bridge State Resort Park as a field leader. Additionally, she has served as Dan’s field assistant, primary researcher, and editor forthe past 24 years and has co-authored several books with him including the most recent editions of the biodiversity series in the Red River Gorge.
Their family includes Austin (Samantha), Angie the kangaroo (Colby), and Tyler as well as seven grandchildren: Zach, Tessa, Callie, Jude, Kyle, Jackson, and Kayden.
Dan and Judy remain committed to conservation work protecting the Earth’s most amazing and underappreciated organisms. Their passion for the natural world is clearly reflected through their writing and simple lifestyle. They are truly dedicated to the magic which is the Red River Gorge.