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Dedicated to much more than getting the perfect shot, wildlife photographer Ron Naveen is also a committed scientist and environmentalist. His study of Antarctic penguins has led Naveen to spend 16 years in the field on the world’s bleakest continent, where temperatures reach -100 degrees Fahrenheit, the winter is almost continually dark, and chess games between cabin-fever-crazed researchers occasionally end in murder. In his latest book, Waiting to Fly: My Escapades With the Penguins of Antarctica, Naveen offersbesides dazzling photographs and compelling descriptions of penguins in the wildhis theory that the flightless birds are a reliable gauge of global environmental trends. A drop in the penguin population, he postulates, indicates some larger problem. Naveen presents his observations, along with a history of Antarctic penguin research, in a slide- and video-illustrated lecture at 6 p.m. at the Museum of American History’s Carmichael Auditorium, 14th & Constitution Ave. NW. $13. For reservations call (202) 357-3030. (Leonard Roberge)