Kudos to Joe Hummer
Thank you, Professor Joe Hummer.
It’s been about 20 years since I first met Professor Hummer as a naïve nature lover at Penn State DuBois. He was a Wildlife Professor within the Wildlife Technology Program.
I consider him one of my mentors in herpetology. He was the first person to introduce me to working with turtles, as well as many other species. He had a few transmitters attached to wood turtles so students could learn hands-on radio-telemetry techniques. This was my first true taste of turtle research. I loved going out in the field with him and seeing his face light up whenever we found a turtle. Once, we found a turtle with an expired transmitter and he showed myself and a few other students how to replace it and how it was attached to the animal. He was always enthusiastic and willing to teach others.
Professor Hummer is one of the best all-around naturalists I’ve ever met. If you had a question about almost anything dealing with the natural world, be it turtles, snakes, birds, mammals, plants, lichen or fossils, etc. it was a good bet that he was knowledgeable about it. His memory was truly incredible and he was usually able to “find” a scientific name buried in the back of his brain, even ones he probably hadn’t thought about in years.
I remember at a student orientation during my first semester, I must’ve looked a little lost since I didn’t really know anyone at the time and Mr. Hummer came over and we started talking. To be honest, I don’t even remember what we talked about but I truly appreciated what he did for me then, and I’ll never forget that. I am certain that he made a lasting impression on countless other students over the years as well.
Truly one of a kind.