Departmental News

It Doesn't Have to be This Way

Want to know what Mirror Pond could look like without a dam? Experts say: Think like a child. Or, in other words, use some imagination. Matt Shinderman, a natural resources professor at Oregon State University-Cascades, says "Lake Creek looks great now—it looks like it was always that way." And, he adds, the situation at Mirror Pond could benefit from similar efforts.

Researchers study effects of forest fragmentation on hummingbird behavior

FES professor Matthew Betts and researcher Adam Hadley of the Betts Laboratory are both landscape ecologists whose research has primarily revolved around birds. Betts and Hadley investigate the effects of habitat loss and fragmentation of species across 37 distinct isolated patches of forest in Costa Rica, seeking an understanding of how forest fragmentation affects pollination services.

Tree planting plan helps homeowners save energy

College of Forestry graduate Brad Hamel was recently featured on KXAN out of Austin, Texas.  Brad graduated as our first MF in urban forestry the past academic year.  His major professor was Paul Ries.

Not Your Imagination: Fall Colors Have Been Especially Good This Year

It's not your imagination: Fall colors have been spectacular in the Northwest this year. But if you want to catch a glimpse, you'd better hurry.  If you remember from grade school, leaves change color when the process of turning the sun’s rays into food winds down. There's no objective scale for measuring a region's autumnal brilliance. But Oregon State University forestry instructor Paul Ries says this year's colors are among the best.

Fresh look at the wolf-grizzly relationship

A study by Oregon State University ecologist and FES professor Bill Ripple has, for the first time, linked the welfare of wolves to the welfare of grizzly bears in the Yellowstone National Park ecosystem. This was big news when the story broke in August, which means that either the story hit during the doldrums of the 24/7 news cycle, or that grizzly bears and wolves have been promoted to front-page fodder by the mainstream press.

OSU Extension publishes new field guide to shrubs of Northwest forests

On your next hike, instead of puzzling over the name of that large upright shrub with tiny white flowers and small red fruits, reach for the new field guide "Shrubs to Know in Pacific Northwest Forests" to quickly identify it as the native red elderberry. Ed Jensen, a professor in Oregon State University's College of Forestry, authored the full-color, easy-to-use field guide for the OSU Extension Service.

NSF grants foster new understanding of biological systems on regional to continental scales

FES professor Chris Still was recently awarded a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF).  To better detect, understand and predict the effects of climate and land-use change on organisms and ecosystems at regional to continental scales, the NSF Directorate for Biological Sciences recently awarded $15.3 million in 10 new macrosystems biology grants.  Since the Macrosystems Biology program was launched in 2011, NSF has made 50 such awards.

UM professor, Nobel laureate, lives life of solitude

Driven into hiding by his notoriety as a contributor to Nobel Prize—winning research, Steven Running spends most of his free time in solitude.  Running considers forest ecologist Richard Waring, now professor emeritus at FES, his intellectual godfather.

Extension Sustainability Summit features Viviane Simon-Brown

FES Emeritus Professor Viviane Simon-Brown attended the Extension Sustainability Summit in Park City, Utah.  She is featured along with 3 others in this program by Access Utah.  The event brought in extension educators on sustainability from all across the nation, to discuss what major environmental sustainability programs are currently being delivered through Cooperative Extension and began talking about future goals.

Gray Wolves May Lose Endangered Status, But Not Without a Fight

Cristina Eisenberg, an ecology researcher at Oregon State University, added that "wolves travel up to a thousand miles to find a mate and establish new territory." Eisenberg, who is working on a book about conservation policy for large carnivores, told LiveScience that delisting wolves on a nationwide basis means that states like Colorado and Utah are unlikely to have a wolf population in the future.