Creating and Disseminating Ecological Knowledge
ESA promotes US scientist engagement with the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). This year the ESA IPBES Steering Committee collected nominations for fellows and experts for three assessments: development of scenarios on nature and its contributions to people, nature’s values and sustainable use of wild species, and invasive alien species. ESA reviewed and recommended a total of 30 applicants to participate in these assessments.
The US Nagoya Protocol Action Group continues to convene regularly to discuss outreach strategies to ensure scientists are aware of the Nagoya Protocol and the importance of access and benefit-sharing when conducting international biological research. The group is developing a learning portal with use cases that will provide relevant, real world examples of the benefits and challenges of navigating the Nagoya Protocol’s requirements. The website is still in development, but available here.
ESA’s Public Affairs Office routinely seeks opportunities to share the work of ecologists — ESA members and authors in our journals — whose research and other efforts advance the science of ecology and educate policymakers and the public about the value and importance of our science. You can read more about it on the Ecotone blog or through any of ESA’s hundreds of touchpoints in the press.
ESA hosts a press office at each Annual Meeting, where journalists and media can seek information on members, presenters, and research at the meeting. In Louisville, KY, 15 media participants attended the 2020 ESA Annual Meeting and produced news stories during and following the event. ESA also publishes press releases about research at the meeting.
ESA Research in the News
The ESA promotes research articles by issuing press releases and working with universities, organizations, and federal agencies that also seek to obtain press exposure. In 2019, the Public Affairs Office produced over 40 press releases, and earned 112 external press releases from other institutions. ESA also earned over 500 news mentions in various platforms including newspapers, magazines, radio, television, and blogs. ESA regularly posts news articles based on its journal articles. Here are some notable examples from 2019:
- Home sweet suboxic home: remarkable hypoxia tolerance in two demersal fish species in the Gulf of California (10.1002/ecy.2539)
- Nature’s pitfall trap: Salamanders as rich prey for carnivorous plants in a nutrient‐poor northern bog ecosystem (10.1002/ecy.2770)
- Tiger sharks eat songbirds: scavenging a windfall of nutrients from the sky (10.1002/ecy.2728)
- Enhancing insights into foraging specialization in the world’s largest fish using a multi‐tissue, multi‐isotope approach (10.1002/ecm.1339)
- Connected macroalgal‐sediment systems: blue carbon and food webs in the deep coastal ocean
- Extinction vortex dynamics of top predators isolated by urbanization (10.1002/eap.1868)
- The cresting wave: larval settlement and ocean temperatures predict change in the American lobster harvest (10.1002/eap.2006)
- Northern forest winters have lost cold, snowy conditions that are important for ecosystems and human communities (10.1002/eap.1974)
- Water clarity and temperature effects on walleye safe harvest: an empirical test of the safe operating space concept (10.1002/ecs2.2737)
- Grandmothers and deadly snakes: an unusual project in “citizen science” (10.1002/ecs2.2877)
Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment
- Alien versus native species as drivers of recent extinctions (10.1002/fee.2020)
- Island of opportunity: can New Guinea protect amphibians from a globally emerging pathogen? (10.1002/fee.2057)
ESA Press Releases
Silverswords may be gone with the wind
In a new study in Ecological Monographs, researchers seek to understand recent population declines of Haleakalā silverswords and identify conservation strategies for the future.
Bats in attics might be necessary for conservation
Researchers investigate and describe the conservation importance of buildings relative to natural, alternative roosts for little brown bats in Yellowstone National Park.
Ecological Society of America Announces New Members Elected to Governing Board
The Ecological Society of America (ESA) is proud to announce the election results for its governing board members.
Bigger doesn’t mean better for hatchery-released salmon
A recent study in Ecosphere examines hatchery practices in regard to how the Chinook salmon that are released back into the natural waterways in the PNW are affecting wild populations.
Tracking wild pigs in real time and understanding their interaction with agro-ecosystems
A new study in Ecological Applications investigates how the success of a wild pig invasion may be dependent on how they use their surrounding food resources
Southwest Chapter Communicating Science Workshop
The Public Affairs Office hosted a Communicating Science Workshop with ESA’s Southwest Chapter, convened at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, AZ in June 2019. The training attracted more than 30 participants from various backgrounds including academics, federal employment, and industry. It was designed to address the needs of ecologists to communicate scientific information in a variety of public and professional interactions. It aimed to build participants’ confidence and skill set for communication with media, Congress, and other audiences, complete with mock Hill interviews. It also provided a professional development opportunity to develop skills for broader impacts.
The next training will be held in February 2020, in conjunction with the Southeast Chaper of ESA. Participants receive a certificate of completion and a travel award up to $200.
ESA Social Media Presence
ESA relaunched its Instagram account January 2019 with the goal of reaching new audiences and younger generations of ecologists. The account’s following increased from 230 to 800 over 2019, with a large bump in followers surrounding the Annual Meeting in Louisville, KY. Average 2-3 posts a week. Average 30-40 likes per post. About 6% engagement rate, cited average for Instagram engagement. Most posts gathered / crafted from journals (have link to journal), EcoPics, Bulletin Gallery, or member submissions.
ESA continues to have a strong following in Twitter (36k) and Facebook (15k), platforms where ESA shares journal article publications, society news, and public announcements.