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Bog Boardwalk Nature Walk

On Saturday, October 3rd, Professor Emerita Christa Schwintzer will be leading a fall plant walk along the boardwalk in Orono, located in the Rolland F. Perry City Forest. Throughout the walk participants will observe changes that plants undergo during the fall, allowing them to survive the winter and then quickly resume growth in the spring. Participants will also be exposed to examples of bog plant adaptations that allow them to live in the wet, low nutrient conditions where most other plants are not able to survive.
The walk will take place from 9-10:30 am, starting at the beginning of the boardwalk, and it is free! Space is limited to 12 participants and registration is required. If you are interested, please email with “Boardwalk nature walk” on the subject line, your name, and a telephone number where you can be reached in case of foul weather.
All are welcome to attend!

NPR Interviews Drummond for Report on Popularity of Nordic Berries in Asia

Frank Drummond, an entomology specialist with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension and a UMaine professor of insect ecology, was quoted in the NPR report, “Asian countries have Nordic berry fever, and Finland can’t keep up.” Every day, about 7,000 Thai workers search the woods of Finland and Sweden for bilberries, lingonberries and cloudberries. Using buckets and scooping tools, they each gather up to 270 pounds of berries, according to the report. Even with each person picking 270 pounds a day, it isn’t enough for the high demand at Nordic berry companies, the report states. The berries are used in food such as pies, jams, ice cream and juice, as well as health and beauty products. Domesticating the Nordic berries — which would involve breeding and selecting to create something similar to the highbush blueberry — is a possibility to help with the demand, the report states. “It’s such a complicated process that it could take several decades for the Scandinavian countries to figure out what is the best way to grow the plant without adverse effects,” Drummond said.

SBE Seminar Series Schedule for 2015

The School of Biology & Ecology is pleased to present this years Friday Seminar Series schedule for fall 2015. The purpose of these seminars is to highlight an array of leading research fields and interests from professors and researches located all over the country.
Seminars will be held on Fridays at 3:00 pm in 107 Norman Smith Hall, unless otherwise noted. Light refreshments will be served at 2:50 pm. All are welcome to attend!

The schedule can be located here.


Ecology and Evolution of Everything Seminar Series Details

What: A weekly seminar-style, semi-formal gathering of ecologists (broadly defined). Students can take the class for credit (EES 590), but everyone — students, staff, faculty, and postdocs — are welcome to attend. We discuss papers, share data, do stats throwdowns, practice talks, etc.

Who: Hosted by Jacquelyn Gill, Brian Olsen (SBE), Brian McGill (SBE), Tim Waring (Econ), and Hamish Greig (SBE). Folks from all disciplines amd career stages welcome.

Where: Norman Smith 101

When: Thursdays, 11 am to 12:15 pm (our first planning meeting is this week, and we’ll sign up for slots, so bring your calendar!)

Why: It’s a great way to meet folks, share ideas, connect across departments, get feedback on papers or talks, and learn from your peers in an informal setting. Sometimes, there are cookies.

Smith Featured in UMaine Today

School of Biology and Ecology professor, Michelle Smith, is featured in the Spring/Summer 2015 issue of UMaine Today. Smith’s work on active learning in large enrollment courses is at the forefront of current science education research.

Read the full article here.

Jacquelyn Gill Featured on PBS Program

School of Biology and Ecology professor, Jacquelyn Gill, is featured on the PBS series, First Peoples. The series premieres June 24th at 9pm.

More information can be found here.

SBE Team Working to Increase Bee Habitat

Alison Dibble, Lois Stack, Megan Leech, and Frank Drummond are featured in a UMaine News story about their efforts to plant pollinator demonstration gardens that will be used for educating farmers and the communities.

Read the full story here.