Identification of Animal Skulls for the Master Naturalist - Statewide Advanced Training


July 8, 2014       9:00 am to 4:00 pm

Course Fee = $65

Lake House
Sandhill Research & Education Center
900 Clemson Road
Columbia, SC 29229


Come hear Master Naturalist & skull expert Christopher Baldwin speak on the clues to the proper identification of an animal skull - the eyes, specialized teeth, mandibles, zygomatic arches, sagittal crest, occipital crest & occipital condyles. Mr. Baldwin will have 40 skulls from his collection of over 100 species. Be sure to bring your skulls (including the ones perched on top of your vertebral column) to the training for Mr. Baldwin to scrutinize.

Nowhere else in North America can you sit down in one room with 40 animal skulls much less be able to handle them. There will be 9 stations, 3-4 people per station, 3-4 skulls per station, and 15 questions & answers per station that teach you exactly how to identify an animal skull.

The course fee of $65 includes a copy of the required text - Animal Skulls: A Guide to North American Species by Dr. Mark Elbroch (list price $46.95) and keys to skulls by the instructor. Participants will receive this text thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor and through working with the author of the book.

General Schedule
  • 9:00 - 9:15 Welcome & Introductions - 
    Dr. James H. Blake, State Coordinator, SC Master Naturalist Program
  • 9:15 - 10:45 Skull Identification Presentation - 
    Christopher Baldwin, Catawba & Midlands Master Naturalist & Educator
  • 10:45 - 12:00 Skull ID 
  • 12:00 - 1:00 Lunch on your own
  • 1:00 - 4:00 Skull ID

Students are responsible for their meals and transportation to the course site. Bring a hand lens, notebook, and pencil/pen.

Register for this course by calling the office of the Interim State Coordinator of the SC Master Naturalist Program between the hours of 8:00 am and 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday (864-878-1394 ext. 114 - ask for Renee). Enrollment is limited to the first 30 paid registrants. After registering by phone, mail your check for $65 (credit cards not accepted) made out to Clemson University to:

Dr. James H. Blake
Interim State Coordinator
SC Master Naturalist Program
P.O. Box 995
Pickens, SC 29671

NOTE:  Your registration is not complete until payment has been received. This training is only for graduates of the SC Master Naturalist Program.


Chris Baldwin

Christopher Baldwin

Christopher Baldwin has a BA in mathematics from Dartmouth College and an MBA in finance from Stanford Graduate School of Business. His day job for 20 years was on Wall Street leading to Director of Research of a Wall Street securities firm.

However, Mr. Baldwin's real passion has always been nature. He is a graduate of the Catawba and Midlands Master Naturalist Programs and is skilled in ornithology & mammalian osteology. Mr. Baldwin has spoken to over 350 audiences about nature, his mammalian skulks, his snake & crocodilian skulls, his avian skulls and finally his marine mammal skulls.