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Weekly Highlights


From: Gabrielle Boudreaux Bodin
Subject: Weekly Highlights, USGS National Wetlands Research Center, September 17, 2009      

Departmental/Bureau News - Upcoming

  • NWRC Branch Chief To Speak at ULL: USGS National Wetlands Research Center Information and Technology Branch Chief Gaye Farris has been invited to be a guest panelist on Careers in the Humanities at the University of Louisiana in Lafayette (ULL) during English Week, March 22-26, 2010. The purpose of the event is to encourage students in English to consider various career options, including public affairs, writing for the media and technical writing and editing. Farris has previously spoken at career events at ULL and at the graduate school of Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge. (Gaye Farris, 337-266-8550)  

Departmental/Bureau News - Current

  • NWRC Scientists Participate in The Wildlife Society 2009 Meeting: USGS National Wetlands Research Center Branch Chief Tom Doyle and scientists Jim Grace and Hardin Waddle participated in the 16th Annual Wildlife Society Conference September 20-24, 2009, in Monterey, Calif.  Doyle presented "Modeling future sea levels and habitat migration under climate change” in a special symposium entitled "Sea level rise – impacts on coastal refuges." Grace presented a talk on “The use of structural equation modeling to investigate multiscale influences on the resident herbivore hotspots in the Serengeti.” (Thomas Doyle, Lafayette, La., 337-266-8647)

  • NWRC Scientist Speaks at University of Connecticut Fall Seminar Series: USGS National Wetlands Research Center scientist Beth Middleton was the invited speaker for the Natural Resources and the Environment Fall Seminar Series at the University of Connecticut in Storrs, Conn., on September 25, 2009.  Her talk was entitled “Biodiversity conservation of baldcypress swamps in times of climate change." (Beth Middleton, Lafayette, La., 337-266-8618)

  • Paper Examines the Effects of Savanna Trees on African Grassland Ecosystem: USGS National Wetlands Research Center scientist Jim Grace recently published a paper “early online” in the Journal of Ecology. The paper, “Local versus landscape-scale effects of savanna trees on grasses,” examines the effects of Acacia trees on growth and nutritional quality of African savanna grasses in Kenyan grazing lands. The authors found that isolated trees have positive local effects on grass forage, but in areas of high tree density, the overall effects are negative. Given the general global increase in shrubs and trees that is ongoing, this study has important implications for savanna herbivores. The paper was co-authored by Corinna Riginos (Princeton University, N.J.), David J. Augustine (U.S. Department of Agriculture – Agricultural Research Service) and Truman P. Young (University of California - Davis). (Jim Grace, Lafayette, La., 337-266-8632)

  • Article Discusses Genetic Plant Adaptation to Environmental Conditions: A recent article published in Environmental and Experimental Botany (Vol. 67, pps. 118-126) by USGS National Wetlands Research Center scientists Ken Krauss, Tom Doyle, and Rebecca Howard examines how plant populations may adapt to environmental conditions over time by developing genetically based morphological or physiological characteristics. Using baldcypress (Taxodium distichum (L.) L.C. Rich) from the southeastern United States, the scientists found that adaptations of coastal baldcypress to broad (rather than narrow) environmental conditions may promote ecophysiological and growth enhancements under a range of global-change-induced stressors. This finding may reflect a natural resilience to environmental change while precluding adaptations for specific flood regimes. The article is entitled, “Is there evidence of adaptation to tidal flooding in saplings of baldcypress subjected to different salinity regimes?” (Ken Krauss, Lafayette, La., 337-266-8882)

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