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ESA 2013 annual meeting

volunteer replanting with Great River Greening

ESA donates $16,615 in carbon offsets to Minnesota re-forestation project

Two years ago, Lee Frelich was sitting in a committee meeting when the idea came to him: the Ecological Society should plant a forest. ESA sets aside $5 for every person attending the Annual Meeting to offset the environmental costs of travel to the meeting location. This year, on Frelich’s advice, the Society wrote a check to a Minnesota non-profit devoted to restoration of local lands and waters.

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What’s the Future of Ecologist-Communicators?

This guest post is by Holly Menninger, Director of Public Science for Your Wild Life at NC State University. Engage. Communicate. Reach out. Engage. Communicate. Reach out. These words echoed throughout the hallways of the Minneapolis Convention Center last week like a mantra. From organized symposia to high-energy Ignite sessions, ecologists both urged for and heard a rallying call to…

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John Foley – climate change is a ‘civilization problem’

By Terence Houston, ESA policy analyst In the face of what he called an “inflection point in history,” on issues such as climate change and natural resources consumption, opening plenary speaker John Foley called on Ecological Society of America (ESA) Annual Meeting attendees to reexamine and build upon the traditional methods of public engagement. Noting that traditional modes of governance…

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Slime, spores…fungi!

One of many sessions that will focus on species interactions at ESA’s 2013 Annual Meeting by Nadine Lymn, ESA director of public affairs As different from plants as plants are from animals, Fungi feature varieties that decompose dead organisms, engage in mutually beneficial relationships with other species, cause disease to plants and animals, and act as predators and parasites.  Mycologists—those who study…

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Unexpected cannibals

One of many sessions that will focus on species interactions at ESA’s 2013 Annual Meeting by Peter Janetos, ESA public affairs intern Kyle McLean, an Environmental & Conservation Sciences graduate student at North Dakota State University, and his team looked at the two different types of juvenile barred tiger salamanders: the ‘typical’ variety and the rarer, cannibalistic morph.  A morph…

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Viper tick removal service

One of many sessions that will focus on species interactions at ESA’s 2013 Annual Meeting by Nadine Lymn, ESA director of public affairs Human cases of Lyme disease continue to rise in the United States. The bacterial disease—which, if untreated can cause significant neurological problems, is transmitted to people by black-legged ticks, which pick up the pathogen by feeding on…

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Kate Brauman integrating eco-agro research scales ESA2013 sympostium 20

Connecting the global to the local – agricultural landscapes from field to orbit

More Agro-ecology at ESA’s 2013 Annual Meeting in Minneapolis by Liza Lester, ESA communications officer   Big changes in agriculture are visible on the global scale – changes in crop yields, dietary choices, water use, fertilizer application, soil retention, and nutrient pollution. In some parts of the world, yield lags, revealing opportunities to get more out of land already in…

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usda conservation buffers Chesapeake Bay

Bridging the public-private land divide for conservation

For much of the world, high-intensity industrial farming produces food with high efficiency, but puts the squeeze on other plant and animal life. Wildlife is mostly sequestered on preserves. But is this the best way to maximize food and biodiversity? Or are there other configurations that might improve mobility of wildlife and benefit other ecosystem services without cost (and possibly with benefit) to private land owners?

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Call for nominations! Joan Ehrenfeld Award for Best Student Presentation in Urban Ecology

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Same Data, Different Century. Sometimes I believe I was born to be a 19th century naturalist. Compiling long term records of flowering phenology involves stitching together old data (for example, this herbarium specimen from 1895) with new data (a phenology observation collected on a smartphone app in 2013). As I trek across Mount Desert Island in the 21st century, I am keenly aware of the naturalists who came before me; in my mind, I insert myself into the troupe of Harvard boys whose field notes and camp logs have become my baseline data. I really love S. A. Eliot's sweater. Caption, Caitlin McDonough MacKenzie. Image, Designed by Michael MacKenzie Herbarium Specimen courtesy of the College of the Atlantic Herbarium Smartphone Screenshot of original data courtesy of fulcrum app Photograph of the Harvard boys in 1880 courtesy of the Northeast Harbor Library Photograph of Caitlin McDonough MacKenzie by Lisa McDonough

In phenology, timing is everything

If you’ve ever thought that botany doesn’t involve enough time travel, you are not alone. Plant ecologists studying climate change and and the timing of flowering are constantly wondering ‘is this happening when it used to happen?’ My job would be infinitely easier if I had access to a time machine.

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