of Ecology, Evolution, and Natural Resources
and Evolution Graduate Program Newsletter
January – February 2008
Previous newsletters may be found at:
gave a plenary address, entitled “Plants and soil: finding a way through the
maze” at the first annual meeting of the Netherlands Ecological Research
Network, a new national organization of ecologists, in Lunteren, the Netherlands.
Zac Freedman, a Ph.D. candidate in Tamar Barkay’s lab, gave a
presentation on January 11 at the
Yellowstone National Park Research Coordination Network(RCN) Workshop at the
Mammoth Lodge in Yellowstone. The title was "Isolation and
Characterization of Early Evolving Mercury Resistant Bacteria in Yellowstone National Park." Zac’s travel was supported by the Yellowstone
NP RCN, an NSF program.
The 2008 Annual Meeting of the Northeast Region of American
Society for Horticultural Science was held at Rutgers
on Friday January 4. Jason Grabosky and
his lab gave four presentations:
- Jess Sanders – “Urban tree
planting and mortality statistics in the boroughs of NYC.”
- Greg Dahle – “Anatomical study to
determine vessel to fiber ratio along Norway maple (Acer platanoides L.)
- Mike Gallagher (undergraduate
researcher) – “Digital visualization of decay in oak species fiver years
- Jason Grabosky – “Plant available
moisture designed soils for pavement systems.”
gave two invited presentations:
Their Diversity and Distribution” to the 4 and 5th grades at Roosevelt Public School on January 17, 2008.
- On February
15, Henry presented “Physiology, Performance, Fitness: Lessons from Lizards”,
in the Cramer Seminar Series in the Department of Biological Sciences at Dartmouth College.
Matthew Kimball, a Ph.D. candidate in Ken Able’s lab:
- Kimball ME, Able
KW (2007). Tidal utilization of
nekton in Delaware Bay restored and reference
intertidal salt marsh creeks. Estuaries and Coasts
Faculty Achievements and Activities:
Joanna Burger and Michael Gochfeld
were interviewed on the Today show regarding "High Mercury Levels Found in
Steven Handel and
were featured in the Winter 2008 issue of Rutgers Magazine.
Steven Handel was featured in the New York
Times Science Question section of January 29thSCIENCE | January 29, 2008
& A: Doomsday for Vermin
By C. CLAIBORNE RAY
If every rat, cockroach and bedbug disappeared from New York City, would that
be a good thing, ecologically speaking?
George McGhee has been chosen to be one of 18 invitees to the University of Leiden, The Netherlands, for an
all-expenses-paid workshop on the concept of symmetry, 10-15 March 2008. This invitation is a direct result of the
publication of McGhee's latest book, The Geometry of Evolution.
George McGhee has been invited to the University
of Valencia, Spain, for an
expenses-paid workshop on "evo-devo" (evolutionary development), in
honor of the late Per Alberch, one of the pioneers of the discipline of
evolutionary development, 21-24 May 2008.
Like the Leiden
invitation, this invitation is in response to the publication of McGhee's
latest book The Geometry of Evolution.
Terry McGuire has been
appointed as a Senior Fellow of the National
Center for Science and
Civic Engagement. The following is taken from the SENCER January Newsletter: “Terry
has been an active participant in the SENCER project. He first participated as
an advance team member (SSI2002), and has brought three teams from Rutgers University. He is a SENCER senior
associate and the author of a SENCER backgrounder describing his journey as a
professor. In addition to his work with SENCER, he is a BEN (BioSciEdNet)
Scholar. At Rutgers University, he was recognized for his distinguished
contributions to Undergraduate Education in the School
of Arts and Sciences at Rutgers University and he was appointed as a
Presidential CASTL Fellow. In 2007, he was appointed to the editorial board for
the new online endeavor Nature-Education, with primary responsibility
for Mendelian Genetics.”
Awards, Achievements, and Activities:
Karen Mabb, a
Ph.D. candidate in Julie Lockwood’s lab, has accepted a position as a wildlife
biologist at Camp
Pendleton, CA. while she
completes her degree.
Congratulations to the
On the successful
completion of the Qualifying Exam:
- Zac Freedman, advisor Tamar
Barkay, on February 6th.
- Jessica Sanders,
advisor Jason Grabosky, on February 12th.
- Alicia Shenko, advisors Rebecca
Jordan and Ravit Golan Duncan, on February 25th.
On the successful
defense of their Preliminary Proposal;
- Carrie Norin, advisor Steven
Handel, on January 10th.
- Greg Dahle, advisor Jason
Grabosky, on February 19th.
- Ben Baiser, advisor Julie
Lockwood, on February 25th
- Yufei Wang, advisor Ming Xu, on
Amanda Dey, (Ph.D.
2005, advisor Joanna Burger) and Larry Niles, (Ph.D. 1996, advisor Joanna
Burger) were featured on the Public Broadcasting System Nature series “Crash: A
Tale of Two Species. The story of Red Knots and Horseshoe Crabs in Delaware Bay and Beyond.” on Sunday February 10 at 8:00
S.L. and S.N. Handel. 2008.
Invasive Acer platanoides inhibits native sapling growth in forest
understorey communities. Journal of Ecology 96(2): 293-302.
Dana Price, Ph.D
2007, advisor Michael May) has accepted a position as a tenure track Assistant
Professor at Salisbury University, in Maryland beginning Fall 2008.. Dana’s
will teach Entomology and Zoology.
Patricia Ramey, Ph.D. 2008, advisors Drs. Fred
and Judy Grassle, reports two
Ramey P.A. and
Bodnar (2008). Selection by a deposit-feeding polychaete, Polygordius jouinae, for sands with relatively high organic
content. Limnology and Oceanography.
Ramey P.A. (2008) Life history and population
dynamics of a dominant polychaete, Polygordius
jouinae, in inner continental shelf sands of the Mid-Atlantic Bight, USA. Marine Biology. In press.
(PhD, 2000, advisor Andrew “Pete” Vayda) working in collaboration with Bonnie
McCay (E&E, Rutgers Human Ecology) and colleagues have just published an
edited volume, created as a tribute in honor of the retirement of E&E
Emeritus Professor, Andrew Vayda. The new book, Against the Grain: The Vayda
Tradition in Human Ecology and Ecological Anthropology (Alta Mira Press,
2008) includes a broad collection of papers that engage various themes in Pete
Vayda's eclectic and thought-provoking writings. Check out the link to Alta Mira's
Juan Wang (M.S. 2007; advisor Ming Xu) has accepted a position as a
Business Analyst in the Group RCI, a
subsidiary of Wyndham Worldwide Corporation. Juan began work there in January