To junior Rob Ritson, African wildlife was the stuff of books and documentaries, not college experience. But a semester in Tanzania turned the exotic ecosystem into a place where he could bring his education from the classroom to the field.
Denise M. Finney, doctoral candidate in ecology, is the recipient of the 2014 Intercollege Graduate Student Outreach Achievement Award. This award recognizes outstanding achievements of Penn State degree candidates in any of the Intercollege Graduate Degree Programs that relate to bringing their scholarship to the community in order to benefit society in some manner. The award endeavors to encourage future scholars and researchers to embrace outreach and promote a commitment to advancing the welfare and quality of life for the public through scholarly pursuits.
Getting up before dawn never appealed to Penn State senior Elyse McMahon, but last summer it was exactly what she wanted to be doing. From June to August, her days began early with trapping and handling endangered Utah prairie dogs for data collection.
A study of the spread of chronic wasting disease among white-tailed deer in Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania found that infected deer tend to cluster in low-lying open and developed areas.
Not many students get to go to Craigieburn Forest Park or Mount Cook, but as senior Sara Mueller learned, Lincoln University in New Zealand is one school that builds field trips such as these into each semester.
Between March 29th and April 4th five students from Penn State competed at the 2014 National Collegiate Judging Contest hosted by Delaware Valley College, Doylestown PA. Penn State finished 6th overall as a team and 15th in Group judging.
Applications are now being accepted for the 2014 Pennsylvania Governor's School for the Agricultural Sciences, which will take place July 13 to Aug. 9 at Penn State's University Park campus.
The restoration of Pennsylvania's river-otter population has been, by all accounts, a great success, and a study being conducted Wildlife and Fisheries Science graduate student Nick Forman and David Walter, adjunct assistant professor of wildlife ecology, will soon quantify the accomplishment by yielding population information.
The conversion to wood-powered burners would make the most sense for larger commercial and industrial operations in areas that have access to large timber resources and a friendly regulatory environment, said Charles Ray, associate professor of wood products operations at Penn State.
"We need a large number of trained volunteers who are willing to provide basic education about the proper construction, testing and maintenance of private drinking-water supplies," said Bryan Swistock, extension water resources specialist.
W F S undergraduate student Torin Miller is a one of four partners in Ruffed Outdoors, a new, student-run business venture that in early November launched a crowd-sourcing financing campaign on Kickstarter.com. On the campaign’s second day, 29 backers had pledged $2,880 toward the company’s $15,000 goal.
Duane Diefenbach, adjunct professor of wildlife ecology and leader of the Pennsylvania Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit based at Penn State, received the Caesar Kleberg Award for Excellence in Applied Wildlife Research during The Wildlife Society's recent annual conference in Milwaukee.
Despite continuing development, urban sprawl and changing land use, Pennsylvania's forest area has remained stable in recent decades, according to James Finley, Ibberson Professor of Forest Resources Management
"The team’s commitment to furthering the soil science profession and soil science at Penn State is something they can be very proud of. Students in the ERM soil science option have 100% job placement over the last 5 years" said Coach Patrick Drohan, associate professor of pedology.
What level of fall wild turkey harvest by hunters causes population declines? That's what lead researcher Duane Diefenbach, adjunct professor of wildlife ecology, and others are learning midway through a five-year study of the birds.
SAF Student Chapter has hats, hooded sweatshirts, and short- and long-sleeve T-shirts on sale. Orders and payment are due by November 6, 2013.
Matthew Hurteau, assistant professor of forest resources, explains how warming temperatures, prolonged drought, and a century’s worth of fire suppression policy are “priming the system to make it more flammable.”
"We are very good at rearing fish, but we're really not very good at releasing those animals in the wild such that they survive," said Victoria Braithwaite, professor of fisheries and biology.
After studying wildfire in a year-long independent research project, Brian Crooks last summer journeyed to the West for the first time to see the effects up close in the Sierra National Forest. The senior forest science major saw his textbooks come to life on the trip.
Forest fragmentation caused by drilling infrastructure is measurable, and may alter bird communities. "Some species -- robins and chipping sparrows -- are attracted to forest edges. Others -- scarlet tanagers, for example -- require a more dense forest to breed," says Penn State graduate student Lillie Langlois. "Pennsylvania is very important for a lot of migratory neo-tropical birds coming from Central and South America that depend on large tracts of forest for breeding."