Greg Dahle and Frank Gallagher, advisor Jason
Grabosky, delivered overviews of
their respective doctoral research at the 2005 Garden State Tree
Conference, held at CookCollege
on March 31.
Dr. Jason Grabosky was a guest
speaker at the 2005 Garden State Tree Conference. Jason’s current research
focuses on tree canopy and root growth as they relate to urban planting
Dr. Julie Lockwood
gave a seminar titled "Conservation of grassland birds at Duke Farms"
on April 5th at the New Jersey Wildlife Society Meeting.
Joseph Paulin , advisor
David Ehrenfeld, gave two presentations this past month:
Paulin, J. B., Drake, D., Ehrenfeld,
D., Carr, P. C. and K. Burguess.“Bears
in the burbs: How does personal experience affect
support for lethal wildlife management techniques in New Jersey?”18th Eastern Black Bear Workshop.Tallahassee,
Florida, April 3-7, 2005.
Paulin, J. B., Drake, D., Ehrenfeld,
D., Carr, P. C. and K. Burguess.“The
effects of personal experience on public attitudes toward lethal
management techniques for three wildlife species.”61st Annual Northeast Fish
and Wildlife Conference.Virginia
Beach, Virginia, April 17-20, 2005.
Faculty Achievements and Activities:
Jason Grabosky and
Greg Dahle ( aJason Grabosky graduate student) received a
John Z. Duling Grant from the Tree Fund for
$6,900.The project is titled “Measuring
Branch Architecture and Localized Wood Strength Properties to Develop Load
Profs. Rick Lathrop, Julie Lockwood and Ted Stiles and doctoral candidate Jennifer Krumins participated in New
Jersey's Wildlife Summit sponsored by the NJ Division
of Fish and Wildlife to discuss the structure and implementation of the state's
Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Strategy. This document will shape the direction of our
efforts to conserve biodiversity in the state over the next several decades. The meeting was held April 6, 2005 at the Duke Farms Estate.
Dr. Julie Lockwood
participated in one of many meetings of the Technical Review Committee for the
selection of Important Bird Areas in New Jersey
for NJ Audubon Society.
Mixing Art and Science:
Dr. Steven N. Handel will have an
artwork exhibited in San Francisco this May-September, at the Museum
of Contemporary Jewish Art.The special exhibition, "Scents of
Purpose," displays modern interpretations of the traditional spice box
used to celebrate the end of the sabbath
day.Handel's piece, created in
collaboration with the NYC artist MierleLadermanUkeles, expresses the
ecological and evolutionary function of spice odors, showing that plants use
odors to communicate with the animal world, to repel (Stay away! I am
distasteful, poisonous) or attract (Come here! I have a reward for you, nectar,
this way the artwork will bring an aspect of biology to a public who has
probably never thought about the chemical ecology of plants. The artwork is
called "I'm Talking To You."!Handel also notes that he is described in
the museum catalog as an "artist/scientist."Just like DaVinci!
Awards, Achievements, and Activities:
Robert Cox’s oral
presentation titled “Does Female Reproductive Investment Constrain Growth and
Promote Male-Larger Sexual Size Dimorphism in Yarrow’s Spiny Lizard, Sceloporusjarrovii?”
was selected for one of the two “Best Contributed Student Paper” awards at the
2005 San Diego meeting of the Society for Integrative and Comparative
Biologists. Bob’s advisor is Henry
Kenneth Elgersma, advisor Joan
Ehrenfeld, and Kirsten Schwarz, advisors Steward
Pickett and Rick Lathrop, received
Honorable Mentions from the National Science Foundation for their proposals
submitted to the Graduate Student Research Program Fellowship.
Three students have received external funding:
Ph.D. candidate in Joan Ehrenfeld’s lab, received a National Science Foundation
Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant.Her research topic is the effects of urbanization on nitrate
removal capacity of urban wetlands.
Tavis Anderson, advisor Michael Sukhdeo,has been awarded the American
Society of Parasitology’s Willis A. Reid, Jr.
Student Research Grant . His work will focus on the community ecology and
island biogeography of parasites.
Shannon Galbraith-Kent, advisor Steven Handel,received the Garden Club of
America's Caroline Thorn Kissel Scholarship for
research conducted in New Jersey.
GraduateSchool – New Brunswick Awards:
members of the Ecology and Evolution Graduate Program received awards from the
Graduate School-New Brunswick for academic year 2004-2005.
Dighton, Director of the Pinelands Field Station,
received one of the two Faculty Graduate Teaching Awards.
·Jennifer Momsen, a Ph.D. candidate in Jean Marie Hartman’s, lab
received a Graduate Student Teaching Award.
·Marsha Morin, Program Secretary received one of the two Staff
We are very proud to say that this is the third
consecutive year that our students have won a Student Teaching Award. A
reception and presentation of the awards will be held April 28th at
Special Study Awards from the Graduate School-New
Brunswick were received by:
·Karen Mabb, advisor Julie
Lockwood, received money to aid in her
research on the ecology of Monk Parakeets in the North-eastern United
·Ai Wen, advisor David Ehrenfeld,
received funds to continue her research on the conservation ecology of Asiatic
Black Bears in China.
·Kirsten Schwarz, advisors Steward Pickett and Rick Lathrop,
received funding to continue work on the role of land use in generating soil
levels of heavy toxic metals in Baltimore, MD.
Graduate Student Retreat – April 16th
The annual P-P-R Retreat was held in Princeton
this year. The retreat is organized by students as a forum for presenting short
papers on their research and a chance to share knowledge and ideas in an
informal gathering. Twelve papers were presented this year with three of those
presented by Rutgers
Hernandez, advisor David Drake, presented an overview of his dissertation research titled “The
Foraging Dynamics of Migratory Shorebirds.”
Palmer, advisor Joan
Ehrenfeld, presented a
portion of his dissertation research titled “Botany writ small: Centimeter-scale pattern in the vegetation of New Jersey
Hamilton’s presentation was also an overview of his dissertation research
titled “Environmental characteristics and their relationship to benthic macroinvertebrate abundance and diversity in streams in northeastern NJ.” Rob’s advisor is Joan
Ag-Field Day – April 30th
The EcoGSA(Ecology and Evolution
Graduate Student Association) will have its usual table by Food Science at
Ag-Field Day on April 30th. There will be an interactive display of
organisms. T-Shirts, carry-alls, and empanadas will be on sale. They are also
organizing a 5K race, “Run for the Woods,” through Helyar’s
Woods and RutgersGardens
beginning at . Register online at www.eden.rutgers.edu/~ecogsa/woods5K.html.
Proceeds will benefit the Woods and the EcoGSA. Several
students are also leading tours of the Gardens and the Woods throughout the
The Center for Remote Sensing and Spatial Analysis (CRSSA), Dr.
Rick Lathrop, Director, will be holding an open house from to
with tours and demonstrations of
remote sensing and GIS technology.
Robert Hamilton, advisor Joan Ehrenfeld,
has accepted a tenure-track position as assistant professor of biology at KentStateUniversity
–Stark Campus. Rob will defend his Ph.D. thesis this summer. Congratulations
The Qualifying Exam is the first
official “rite of passage” for Ph.D. students. This exam marks the official
transition to Ph.D. candidacy. Typically, the Ecology and Evolution Graduate
Program requires this to be an oral exam testing the students overall
scientific knowledge with an emphasis on ecology and evolution.
This has been a busy month as several
graduate students successfully completed their Qualifying Exams and are now
Galbraith-Kent, advisor Steven Handel, on March 23rd.
Krumins, advisor Peter Morin, on
Hicks, advisor John Dighton,
on April 12th.
advisor David Ehrenfeld, on April 18th.
D’Amore, advisor Kathy Scott, on April 20th.
Judy Weis, on April 21st.
Julie Lockwood, on April 22nd.
The ‘prelim” in Ecology and Evolution
is the presentation and defense of a written Ph.D. research proposal to the
a Ph.D. candidate in Steven Handel’s lab, successfully completed her
Preliminary Exam on April 19th.
Dr. Lin Jiang, Ph.D. 2003,and currently a post- doctoral fellow in Paul Falkowski’s
lab, has accepted a tenure-track position as assistant professor in the School
of Biology at Georgia Tech.
Dr. Timon McPhearson,
Ph.D. 2004, has recently been awarded a Columbia
University Science Fellowship as a post-doctoral research scientist in Columbia’s
Department of Ecology, Evolution and Environmental Biology (E3B). He will
be teaching in the Frontiers of Science course this fall while continuing in
his role as an ecologist at the AmericanMuseum of Natural History’s Center
for Biodiversity and Conservation.
Great Eastern Ecology Inc., Dr.Mark Laska,
CEO, PhD. 1996, is pleased to announce
that a special issue of peer-reviewed scientific papers was published this winter
and are available on line at Urban Habitats: The Hackensack Meadowlands:
History, Ecology, and Restoration of a Degraded Urban Wetland. http://www.urbanhabitats.org/v02n01/index.html This includes the following paper by Lisamarie Windham, Ph.D. 1999, Mark S. Laska, and Jennifer Wollenberg:
Evaluating Urban Wetland Restorations:
Case Studies for Assessing Connectivity and Function.
Dr. Fairbrothers influenced many students in the Ecology and
Evolution Graduate Program.
A Symposium and Banquet Honoring the Legacy of David E. Fairbrothers
“The Future of Plant Research”
This event is organized to honor David Fairbrothers’ work during his 40+ year career at RutgersUniversity as a researcher, academic advisor, teacher, administrator,
and colleague. David Fairbrothers’ historic influence
over plant research, conservation of plants on both a local and nationwide
scale, as well as protection of habitats in the NJ Pinelands cannot be
overestimated. He will be honored by former students, colleagues and his
friends in a Mini-Symposium
Time: June 4th ,
(symposium), (banquet), you can attend
either or both.
Place:Winants Hall, College AvenueCampus, New
Brunswick, Rutgers University, NJ
Speakers for Mini-Symposium: To
be announced (please contact Lena Struwe or Jim White if you are interested in
speaking at this event).