TNCC Offers New Biology Wetlands Field Study Course This Summer

Published: May 25, 2010

This summer Thomas Nelson Community College (TNCC) will provide an opportunity for in-depth wetlands study through a new two-week course offered by its Biology Department. Called Topics in Wetlands Biology (BIO 295), the three-credit course runs July 26 to August 5 meeting Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on TNCC’s Hampton campus.

The course is open to the general public – especially K-12 teachers – TNCC students and students from other colleges/universities who are home for summer break. No science prerequisites are required for the class but a tolerance for outdoor conditions is one important necessity, according to Biology Professor Martin Zahn.

In addition to classroom time, intensive field study involving hands-on investigation at six off campus sites in the region is included in the course. “Students will need to be prepared to get muddy, wet, and bug-bitten,” said Zahn. Transportation will be provided by the College, if available, or carpooling arrangements will be made.

He said students will learn the characteristics of wetlands in general and how to determine that an area is a wetland using hydrology, vegetation, and soils. “The value that our wetlands provide will be emphasized. Delineation of wetlands will also be introduced. Wetlands surround all of us every day in the Tidewater area. They are wildlife nurseries; they hold vast amounts of water and prevent flooding; they filter water runoff from storms and they detoxify our environment,” said Zahn.

To register for the course, visit and apply to TNCC. Those who are not current TNCC students must enroll as career exploration or non-degree seeking students. Standard tuition and fees required by TNCC for an academic credit course apply.

For more information about Topics in Wetlands Biology (BIO 295), contact Professor Zahn at or Biology Instructor Kimberly Demnicki at Details about other Biology offerings at TNCC are available at


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