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2014

Evaluating Wastewater Reuse with the “Living Filter”
December 11, 2014
Penn State's “Living Filter” is a wastewater reuse system started as a research initiative in the 1960s. A recent study by graduate student Emily Woodward and colleagues at Penn State aimed to determine whether estrogen hormones in the wastewater used for irrigation were accumulating in the soil profile.
Mont Alto Forestry Students Conquer 135-foot Yellow Poplar in 'Big Tree Climb'
December 9, 2014
On Dec. 5, Penn State Mont Alto forestry students climbed a 135-foot yellow poplar on the Penn State Mont Alto campus in a 20-year annual exercise of forest technology instructor Craig Houghton’s arboriculture class.
Safe to Drink: App Helps Solve Water Problems
December 9, 2014
"Other than Alaska, Pennsylvania is the only state in the nation that doesn't regulate its private water systems. With no regulatory framework to protect these water supplies, it can be a lot for someone just buying a house to manage. Extension has become one of the few unbiased, research-based resources to help meet the water needs of Pennsylvania's large, rural population," said Bryan Swistock, a Penn State Extension water resources educator.
Penn State is a Sustainable State
November 24, 2014
Penn State is becoming quite the sustainable state. The University is making some major strides in sustainability through programs for staff, students and the community. Judd Michael, professor of sustainable enterprises, leads one of those programs.
Insights into Deer Movement Offered on Research Website
November 6, 2014
Two years into a study of factors influencing forest regeneration in Pennsylvania, researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences are offering never-before-seen insights into deer movement.
Climate Change Not Responsible for Altering Forest Tree Composition
October 15, 2014
Forests in the Eastern United States remain in a state of "disequilibrium" stemming from the clear-cutting and large-scale burning that occurred in the late 1800s and early 1900s, contends Marc Abrams, professor of forest ecology and physiology.
Shale Gas Development - Bringing Change to Pennsylvania Forests and Wildlife
September 16, 2014
If you have spent any time in the forests of Pennsylvania over the past six years, you’ve noticed many changes — mainly in the form of well pads, drilling rigs, traffic jams, and compressor stations all related to shale gas development in the Marcellus Shale. What you may not have noticed is the impact of this development on plant and animal species. Margaret C. Brittingham, Lillie A. Langlois, and Patrick J. Drohan are beginning to study and understand the impact.
Students Enhance Habitat for Wildlife near Restored Creek
September 16, 2014
Students in Michael Sheriff's Conservation Biology class in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences will build and install bird and bat boxes to enhance wildlife habitat near a recently restored creek.
Children's Garden at Arboretum Opens; New Fund Set Up for Children's Programs
September 10, 2014
“From the beginning, the arboretum has been a destination for families who want to encourage their children to love and care for the natural world,” says Kim C. Steiner, director of the arboretum and professor of forest biology.
Gettin' Dirty: Agroecology Major Excels as Member of U.S. Soil Judging Team
August 25, 2014
Penn State student Nancy Kammerer and seven other undergraduate students from throughout the United States made up the United States National Soil Judging Team that competed in Korea in June 2014 . Patrick Drohan, associate professor of pedology, coaches Penn State’s Soil Judging Team.
Student Stories: Wildlife Grad Works to Protect Elephants in Thailand
July 25, 2014
Recent Penn State alumna Mollie McGinnis dedicated six months following graduation to a project in Huay Pakoot, Thailand, working to bring elephants from tourist camps back into their natural habitats within their owners' communities.
Radio Tags, Telemetry Used in River-Bass-Movement Research
July 10, 2014
If you catch a smallmouth bass in the Susquehanna or its tributaries, with a wire trailing from its underside, it is a participant in a study of fish movement related to wider research into the causes of fish diseases in the river system.
Habitat Loss, Not Poison, Better Explains Grassland Bird Decline
June 23, 2014
Contrary to recent well-publicized research, habitat loss, not insecticide use, continues to be the best explanation for the declines in grassland bird populations in the U.S. since the 1980s, according to a new study by ecologists.
Student Stories: Forest Science Major Helps with Forest Fire, Carbon Research
June 20, 2014
Celine Colbert spent last summer in the West assisting with research that may help to prevent severe wildfires.
Penn State Extension Develops New Water Quality App
June 9, 2014
"We know that people are increasingly using smartphones and other mobile devices to access their information,” said Bryan Swistock, water resources extension specialist and a member of the team that helped to develop the app. "This app will allow private water system owners to diagnose problems while they are actually looking at their water supply."
Renewable Energy Certificate Programs Now Available at Penn State World Campus
June 6, 2014
“Penn State’s programs are designed to provide working professionals with the latest knowledge and skills needed for success in the renewable energy field,” said Daniel Ciolkosz, academic program coordinator for Penn State’s online intercollege Master of Professional Studies in Renewable Energy and Sustainability Systems (iMPS-RESS).
Climate Change, Other Factors May Reshape Central Appalachian Forests
May 29, 2014
The hardwood forests of the central Appalachians are a bastion of biodiversity, providing protective habitat for some 6,000 species of plants and animals. They support a $5 billion forest products industry in Pennsylvania alone. But these forests face stresses that could change their character substantially over the next hundred years.
Wildlife Technology Alums Honored as Student Marshals at University Park
May 28, 2014
Two graduates of the Penn State DuBois Wildlife Technology program served as student marshals during commencement ceremonies at University Park on May 17. Both Nicholas Moore and Scott Laudermilch earned their associate degree in Wildlife Technology at Penn State DuBois, then went on to further their education at University Park in Wildlife and Fisheries Science.
Oil and Gas Development Homogenizing Core-forest Bird Communities
May 21, 2014
Conventional oil and gas development in northern Pennsylvania altered bird communities, and the current massive build-out of shale-gas infrastructure may accelerate these changes, according to researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.
Hamer Foundation Provides Support for Center for Private Forests
May 12, 2014
A Penn State center that helps ensure sound stewardship of privately owned forestland in Pennsylvania will enhance its programming, thanks to a gift from a foundation created by a Penn State alumnus and benefactor.
Research Indicates Coyote Predation on Deer in East Manageable
May 9, 2014
Coyotes are a major predator of white-tailed deer across the East, especially fawns born each spring, but wildlife managers nonetheless are able to stabilize and even grow deer herds, according to researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.
Citizen Scientists Provide Clarity for Lake Researchers' Questions
May 1, 2014
A study of water clarity in Midwest lakes during a 70-year period that spanned passage of the Clean Water Act reveals a steady improvement over time, according to Tyler Wagner, adjunct associate professor of fisheries ecology and assistant leader of the Pennsylvania Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit at Penn State.
Student Stories: Wildlife Major Camps in Serengeti during Semester Abroad
April 22, 2014
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.
Finney Receives 2014 Intercollege Graduate Student Outreach Achievement Award
April 22, 2014
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.
Endangered: Wildlife Major Helps with Research on Utah Prairie Dogs
April 18, 2014
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.
Researchers Identify Terrain Likely to Attract Wasting Disease-infected Deer
April 12, 2014
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.
First Semester Away:Wildlife and Fisheries Science Major Studies in New Zealand
April 10, 2014
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.
Soil Judging Team takes 6th at 2014 Nationals; Kammerer to attend International Contest in Korea
April 9, 2014
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.
Governor's School for the Ag Sciences Back after Five-year Hiatus
March 29, 2014
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.
'CSI River Otters:' Animal Forensics, DNA Used to Estimate Population
February 27, 2014
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.