Amanda Rodewald Addresses Threat of Bird Extinctions

In a recent editorial piece for The Hill entitled “Avoiding the path to zero”, Amanda Rodewald addressed the ever-present threat of bird extinctions. Amanda Rodewald is the director of conservation science at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, faculty fellow at Cornell University’s Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future, an associate professor in the Department of Natural Resources at Cornell University, and a Robert F. Schumann Faculty Fellow. In her editorial, Rodewald looked at four grand species of grouse which are already suffering from extremely low population sizes. She emphasized the point that while extinctions (such as that of the passenger pigeon) may seem unlikely with modern ecological knowledge, we are closer to that precipice than we may think. In light of the recently issued State of the Birds report, Rodewald identified five major ways to help save America’s bird populations:

  1. “Fully fund key bird conservation legislation, such as the North American Wetlands Conservation Act and the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act.
  2. Increase the price of the Duck Stamp to $25 as supported by Ducks Unlimited and other conservation groups.
  3. Sign the Agreement on the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels treaty that endorses bird-friendly ocean fishing.
  4. Support successful conservation programs like the Land and Water Conservation Fund, Migratory Bird Joint Ventures and State and Tribal Wildlife Grants.
  5. Keep promises made in the Farm Bill by appropriating amounts authorized for conservation.”

(List taken directly from “Avoiding the path to zero” by Amanda Rodewald)

Please read the full article written by Amanda Rodewald here: “Avoiding the path to zero”

For more information about Rodewald’s work with The Hill check out this link!

Amanda Rodewald featured on NPR discussing Mute Swans

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!

Welcome Amanda and Paul Rodewald

Dear DNR Community,

It is a great pleasure to announce that Dr. Amanda Rodewald has formally accepted the position of Director of Conservation Science at the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology (CLO) and Associate Professor in the Department of Natural Resources. Her responsibilities will include teaching one course per yr, graduate advising in NR, as well as managing her research and day-to-day responsibilities at CLO.

Amanda currently is Professor of Wildlife Ecology in the School of Environment and Natural Resources at The Ohio State University. She received her B.S. from the University of Montana, M.S. from the University of Arkansas, and her Ph. D. in Ecology from Pennsylvania State University. Amanda’s research spans a variety of disciplines relating to avian ecology and conservation, ranging from coffee-growing and silvicultural landscapes in the northern Andes to managed landscapes and urban-rural interfaces around North America. She strives to understand how human activities influence ecological systems and the services they provide, and to apply this understanding to conservation and management of wild, semi-wild, and managed landscapes. She has won numerous research and leadership awards during her career, is a Fellow of the American Ornithologists’ Union, serves on the Science Advisory Board for the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency plus several other advisory boards, and is an elected member of the faculty senate at OSU. Besides being highly productive in the peer-reviewed technical literature, Amanda actively engages in outreach and extension, and has written several management bulletins and numerous popular articles.

Amanda will be visiting several times this coming spring and summer, and currently anticipates being here full time beginning in January 2013 after completing obligations at OSU. I have communicated with Amanda about spending next spring doing several guest lectures for DNR classes, while we work with her to develop a class that draws on her expertise and contributes to the DNR or Env major.

Amanda’s husband, Dr. Paul Rodewald, will also be relocating to Cornell next year as a Sr. Research Associate in the CLO Bird Populations Program. He may also teach one course per year in DNR; I will update you on this once we reach an agreement. Paul is currently Associate Professor in the Department of Wildlife Ecology at OSU, where he studies the ecology of migratory songbirds, and manages the Ohio Breeding Bird Atlas II, a scientifically rigorous citizen-science project with close ties to the eBird group at CLO. His start-date here is likely to be postponed until the end of the 2012-13 school year, when he and Amanda move permanently to Ithaca with their two children.

I hope you will welcome Amanda to Cornell and DNR. I am looking forward to the potential for greater collaborations with CLO as we continue to build our conservation programs at Cornell.

Marianne Krasny

Professor and Chair, Department of Natural Resources