OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

Departmental News

New book details threats to the world's forests, offers solutions for conservation

"In the 1950s, we assumed that the forests were not going to change," said Richard Waring, retired professor of forestry at Oregon State University and co-author of the book. "We assumed that if you disturbed them in a certain way, they would come back. Right now it looks like some of the drier forestlands will be in continuous transition to ecosystems that may not include trees at all."

An Endangered Act: Conservationists Say Obama's Interior Department Is Watering Down the ESA

“The 1966 law was deemed inadequate in part because scientists pointed out that actions taken only to prevent the complete extinction of a species were likely not to (work),” says Michael Paul Nelson, a professor and environmental ethicist at Oregon State University. “It defined 'endangered species' merely as 'species at risk of extinction.'”

A new century with carnivores

In The Carnivore Way, Cristina Eisenberg gathers her most compelling stories and the latest science from the Mexico to Alaska to help human beings learn how to coexist with the key carnivores in the Greater Rocky Mountains — the wolf, cougar, grizzly bear, lynx, wolverine and jaguar.

Sky Lan from Taiwan receives first Women-in-Science Scholarship

FES PhD candidate Sky Lan has just won the Women In Science scholarship through the Tree Foundation! This scholarship will assist Sky as she learns about forest canopy ecology here at OSU, and will propel her towards her eventual goal of sharing the beauty and complexity of Taiwan's forests with researchers around the world.

Conservation, or Curation?

Environmental ethicist Michael Paul Nelson co-wrote an opinion piece for the New York Times about a new policy related to the Endangered Species Act.

Three OSU faculty members named fellows of American Geophysical Union

Three Oregon State University faculty members have been named 2014 fellows of the American Geophysical Union. They are the only three fellows in this class from the state of Oregon. The three selected as fellows were Edward Brook and Gary Egbert from the College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences; and Beverly Law from the College of Forestry.

Runaround: Three Months of Correspondence With the EPA

When the EPA dismisses members of the media, it is dismissing the public—the people the agency is supposed to serve, said Michael Nelson, a professor of environmental ethics at Oregon State University.

What Do Wild Animals Do in a Wildfire?

Heat can kill too—even organisms buried deep in the ground, such as fungi. Jane Smith, a mycologist with the U.S. Forest Service in Corvallis, Oregon, has measured temperatures as high as 1,292 degrees Fahrenheit (700 degrees Celsius) beneath logs burning in a wildfire, and 212 degrees Fahrenheit (100 degrees Celsius) a full two inches (five centimeters) below the surface.

Precipitation and Not Warming Temperatures May be More to Blame for Bird Population Shifts

Warming temperatures may not impact birds as much as you might think. Instead, precipitation is what might cause problems for species in North America. "When we think of climate change, we automatically think warmer temperatures," said Matthew Betts, professor in the College of Forestry. "But our analysis found that for many species, it is precipitation that most affects the long-term survival of many bird species."

Why Is Lake Abert Disappearing?

Trent Seager, a Ph.D. candidate at Oregon State who’s led bird counts at the lake for 20 years, remembers taking his concerns to a manager at the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. At their first meeting, the manager was receptive, interested and worried, Seager says. Seager, another Lake Abert Council member, thought he’d finally broken through.

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