On August 25, 2014 a 7-foot-long Sturgeon officially became part of the The Great Shipwrecks of NY’s ‘Great’ Lakes Signature Exhibit presented by New York Sea Grant and The Great New York State Fair. The addition of the sturgeon to the Great Lakes exhibit provides a wonderful opportunity for the public to learn about the sturgeon, which is a keystone fish both locally and globally. Tom Brooking, a Cornell Fisheries Biologist and volunteer for NY Sturgeon for tomorrow, says that “Being part of this Great Shipwrecks at the State Fair is a wonderful opportunity to educate the public about New York State Department of Environmental Conservation efforts to re-establish the fish in such numbers that it can be removed from Threatened and Endangered Species list.”

If you would like to learn more about the exhibit, the sturgeon, and The Great New York State Fair, check out these links!
NY Sturgeon for Tomorrow Facebook Page (a non profit organization with some great links!)
StarNews Daily article
Great Shipwreck’s of NY’s “Great” Lakes article

Ishani

On July 10, 2014 at the National University of Singapore, Ishani Mukherjee received the World Future Foundation PhD Prize, a $10,000 award in Environmental & Sustainable Research.  Ishani did her B.S. (2004) in the Department of Natural Resources and was a M.S. (2006) student with Dr. James Lassoie.  For more details concerning Ishani’s award, see:  http://lkyspp.nus.edu.sg/news/ishani-mukherjee-receives-world-future-foundation-phd-prize-in-environmental-sustainability-research/.

Congratulations, Ishani!!

James LassoieJim Lassoie is the recipient of the Innovative Teaching in International Agriculture and Rural Development Grant by International Programs, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.  This $3000 award will be used to fund the logistical and curriculum development of a three week service trip to Ecuador.  This trip is offered as a part of IARD/LATA 4011/6011 “Experience Latin America – Ecuador Edition I/II”, a two-course sequence, fall and spring semesters, 3 credits each.  For more details concerning this award and “Experience Latin America – Ecuador Edition I/II”, see http://blogs.cornell.edu/ipcals/2014/08/05/james-lassoie-is-awarded-ip-cals-innovative-teaching-grant/

Congratulations, Jim!

akf34-portraitANGELA K. FULLER received the Award of Professional Excellence from the University of Maine, Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Conservation Biology.  The award is in recognition of outstanding and long-term contributions to the wildlife profession and the conservation and management of natural resources. 

On May 12th, Paul Curtis received thanks from Jessica Williams, 6th Grade Teacher at Newark Valley Central School, for his collaboration with three 6th grade boys and recognition in the following article she submitted to the local Newark Valley newspaper:

Congratulations to 6th graders Collin Creeley, Riley Malone and Joshua Post!  The boys placed 1st at the State level in a National science competition’s 6th grade division. eCYBERMISSION is a web-based Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics competition for 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th grade teams. Each team proposes a solution to a real problem in their community and then competes for State, Regional and National Awards.  This type of ‘real world’ problem solving challenges students to explore how Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics work in the world.

Collin, Riley and Josh chose to explore the deliberate extermination of coyotes as these animals move into suburban and even urban areas of New York.  The boys hypothesized that the killing of these animals was done out of ignorance and fear.  They designed an experiment in which they measured children’s feelings of fear and tendency toward acts of violence against coyotes and then educated these same children about the animals in general.  After the intervention (the education about coyotes) they found that students’ feels of fear and tendency toward aggressive behavior against the animals significantly dropped.  This has interesting implications for wildlife management but also has broader reaching implications for human behavior in general.

In addition to a tremendous amount of reading related to the coyote population and what impact their deliberate extermination has on the eco-system, the boys also collaborated with internationally renowned coyote expert, Paul D. Curtis.  Dr. Curtis serves as Extension Wildlife Specialist in the Department of Natural Resources at Cornell University. His applied research and extension programs have focused on reducing human-wildlife conflicts in agricultural and suburban landscapes. His work includes community-based wildlife management issues and public policy education. Dr. Curtis was a tremendous asset to our students and was a wonderfully supportive and encouraging guide and the students were so grateful for his input.  The boys engaged in skype meetings with Dr. Curtis and communicated with him via email.

All three boys have received college scholarships for their 1st place win and are thrilled with their accomplishment. 

http://cornellcals.tumblr.com/post/92149047299/coyote-pretty

 

Angela Fuller Outstanding Professional AwardIn May, Angela Fuller received the Outstanding Professional Award, presented by the New York Chapter of The Wildlife Society.  The award is made to a wildlife professional for outstanding professional accomplishments in the wildlife field in New York State.

Congratulations Angela!

Amy Heatherington received the CALS Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant Award on Thursday, May 8.  Congratulations, Amy!

CALS DNR Outstanding TA (Hetherington)

If you are free on Tuesday, May 6th from 3:30 to 4:30, this special seminar might be of incredible interest to you! Entitled “Constructing Collaboration and Dialogue – the Lower Mekong Public Policy Initiative (LMPPI) of Southeast Asia”, this seminar will be hosted by the renowned Dr. Rainer Asse, Ph.D. Asse’s associations include being the director of the LMPPI, Vietnam Program Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, and the Harvard Kennedy School. The seminar will take place in Fernow Hall G24, so if you are free, please make an effort to attend what will surely be an  interesting and engaging seminar!

 

Amanda Rodewald, director of Conservation Science at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, was recently quoted on NPR on the topic of invasive Mute Swans. Rodewald says that the non-native swans have posed a threat to birds such as loons and least terns. Now that they have a growing presence in New York, they could potentially displace some of the few remaining black tern populations in New York state. While swans may be beautiful to look at, they are also extremely dangerous animals and their foraging habits are very destructive to underwater ecosystems.

Listen to the story or read more about this topic here!

Over winter break, fifteen students enrolled in the IARD class “Special Topics in International Agriculture and Rural Development” traveled to Intag, Ecuador, and worked closely with the local people to improve their community. The course concept came from a student, Martin Zorrilla ’13, who asked Prof. James Lassoie, Natural Resources, and Prof. Charlotte Jirousek, Fiber Science, to teach it. During the fall semester, students worked in teams to communicate with Intag locals and learn about the community, then applied what they had learned during their three week trip. While in Intag, students “remodeled a store, created a manual on soil improvement, planted trees, developed maps of rare species, and helped develop new tools.”

The students have created a gallery to showcase their experiences in Intag. It is dedicated in memoriam to Professor Jirousek, who suggested the gallery. The gallery will open on Monday afternoon at 4:30 PM, and is located in the Jill Stuart Gallery of the Human Ecology Building.

Read the complete article about this from The Cornell Daily Sun here!

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