JACKSON TWP.  Did you know that there are only three types of mammals but there are roughly 5,000 species of mammals? Or, did you know that mammals were around during the days of the dinosaurs? The dinosaurs perished but the mammals survived.

Carrie R. Elvey is a program coordinator and senior naturalist with The Wilderness Center in Wilmot. As part of its outreach programming, The Wilderness Center travels to different locations to host its Nature Study Series. One of the locations Elvey has been visiting for the past four years is the Paul & Carol David YMCA in Jackson Township.

Elvey started the next round of six weeks of one-hour classes on Feb. 12. This group of classes focuses on The Lives of Mammals.

“The classes are part of our lifelong learning programming where we partner with other groups like the Jackson Township YMCA to bring our nature series to local residents,” Elvey said. “Each six-week program has a different focus like plants or animals and this round focuses on mammals, the different types and the history are part of the series.”

The first class was titled The Rise of Mammals. Each of the following classes start at 11 a.m. and last for an hour. Next up is:

- Nature’s Snack Foods (Feb. 19): Diversity of small mammals from shrews to rabbits

- Go Nuts (Feb. 26): Ohio’s seven species of squirrels

- Stealthy, Stinky, Thespian (March 5): Three omnivores that are the most recognizable common backyard visitors

Good Boy? – Ohio’s Canines (March 12): Fact from fiction when it comes to foxes and coyotes

Ohio’s Comeback Kids (March 19): Learn about the bear, bobcat, otter and deer

All of the classes include a lecture, and some will include meeting some live animals.

Paul and Carol David YMCA Director of Specialized Exercise Mike Poulsen said the series helps support the YMCA’s wellness program “because it encourages people to get outside and enjoy nature.”

“This is our fourth year for the series and we always get a great response with 10-12 people at each class,” Poulsen said. “It’s open to anyone in the area and any age. There is a small fee to attend each class or this is a series pass. This is a great way to expose adults and especially kids to animals and nature. We want to include more STEM (science, technology, engineering and medical) in our programming. These type classes teach conservation, biology and ecology.”

Pouslen said registration can be taken at the door on the day of the class or interested persons can call The Wilderness Center at 330-359-5235.