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How Vermont citizen scientists made history by finding a rare orchid

John Gange
John Gange
This hour, we'll hear how two Vermonters found the small whorled pogonia.

Earlier this spring, two Vermonters found a rare orchid on Winooski Valley Park District conservation land in Chittenden County. The small whorled pogonia is considered a threatened species under the Federal Endangered Species Act, and its presence hasn't been confirmed in Vermont since 1902.

The discovery sheds light on the role that citizen scientists play in our world, at a time when climate change threatens an increasing number of plants and animals.

Our guests are:

  • Tom Doubleday, Colchester resident, who found the orchid along with John Gange of Shelburne
  • Bob Popp, Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife botanist

Broadcast live at noon on Tuesday, June 14, 2022; rebroadcast at 7 p.m.

Have questions, comments or tips? Send us a message or tweet us @vermontedition.

Mikaela Lefrak joined VPR in summer 2021 as co-host and senior producer of 'Vermont Edition'. Prior to that, she was a reporter and host at WAMU in Washington, D.C.
Tedra joined VPR as a producer for Vermont Edition in January 2022. Before moving to Vermont, she was a journalist in New York City for 20 years. She has a master’s degree in journalism from New York University.