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Ellen Paul

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  1. Please visit the new and improved BIRDNET. We continue to add new resources and update information. Added today: an important animal welfare document for wildlife biologists and their IACUCS And a downloadable Pennsyvlania permit application.
  2. Ellen Paul

    Kimberly Gray Smith, 1948- 2018

    Kimberly Gray Smith, 69, passed away in Fayetteville April 9, 2018. He was born July 19, 1948, in Manchester, Connecticut, to Robert H. and Janet (Simon) Smith. He was third of 5 children. He is survived by siblings Holiday Houck, Robert H. Smith, Jr., Wendelin J. Smith, Bradford S. Smith, their spouses and many nieces and nephews. Kim and his wife Peggy J. (Jones), of the home, were married 45 years (since 1972). Their daughter, Mallory and husband Sheldon Steinert of Fayetteville are parents of Erowyn, Simon, Laura, and Kara. Kim, as Distinguished Professor of Biological Sciences at UA-Fayetteville, pursued research in various areas of terrestrial ecology. His interests ranged widely from black bears to birds to bugs. His formal education took him from Kimball Union Academy (prep school) in New Hampshire to undergraduate studies at Tufts University (B.S. 1971). He received advanced degrees from the University of Arkansas-Fayetteville (M.S. 1975) and Utah State University (Ph.D. 1982). Kim was a post-graduate research ecologist at Bodega Marine Lab, UC Berkley (1980-1981). He also served as Research Associate at Manomet Bird Observatory (1977-1980). Kim began his professional teaching and research career at UA-Fayetteville in fall 1981. He attained status as University Professor of Biological Sciences (2009) and Distinguished Professor (2015). During his career he was Departmental Chair of Biological Sciences (2004-2008) and a highly productive researcher and collaborator, with approximately 300 professional publications. Kim was a committed educator and nurtured students at various stages of career preparation and development, including 8 post-doctoral research associates, 23 doctoral students, 36 masters students, and many undergraduate honors students. Kim was deeply involved in numerous professional organizations in a variety of roles: officer, editor, meeting organizer, etc. He served as Editor in Chief of The Auk (2000-2004), the primary scientific journal of what is now the American Ornithological Society. In lieu of flowers, the family invites contributions to causes and activities valued by Kim. Specifics about contributions, as well as a celebration of Kim’s life will be announced on a future date. Kim presented a retirement seminar in the Department of Biological Sciences on April 5, just 4 days before his death. He entertained a packed room with an often humorous summary of his life and career, “Life in the Fast Lane: My Life as a Community Ecologist.” He ended his seminar with some advice to younger colleagues: “Be curious, be creative, challenge yourself to learn new things, learn the history of things that interest you, take students on field trips, take students abroad,” and finally, “have fun doing what you do … I did …” Cremation arrangements by Beard’s Funeral Chapel.
  3. Bird-Smart Wind Campaign Director Location: Washington, DC Application Submission Deadline - April 10, 2018 The Director, Bird-Smart Wind Energy Campaign leads ABC's work to minimize the impact to birds caused by the development of wind power and associated electrical transmission lines and towers. The Director works in close collaboration with other ABC program staff and with supervision from the Vice President of Policy. Using communication, advocacy and (if necessary) legal tools, the work will focus on establishing mitigation requirements and regulations to protect birds at wind energy facilities; addressing the most poorly sited wind projects; educating key decision makers and the public; and engaging industry representatives to protect threatened and endangered species, eagles, and other federally-protected birds. The position requires excellent advocacy and communication experience, strong writing skills, and a broad knowledge of renewable energy development and bird collisions. Primary Duties: 1. Develop and implement communication and policy initiatives: Work with ABC staff, NGO partners, and other leaders to identify, develop, and implement a high-profile national campaign to minimize the impact of wind turbines on birds. Develop strategies, partnerships, and agency liaisons to address the issue. 2. Advocate for and develop necessary messaging and materials for bird smart wind policies, including influencing federal legislation and regulations, advancing mitigation policies, and meeting with industry representatives to find solutions to the threat of collisions. 3. Identify and stop the most damaging wind projects to birds using communications, advocacy, legal, and other tools that are available. 4. Partnerships and Coalition Building: Represent ABC's work with other institutions, government, and conservation organizations to advance the campaign. Work with, mentor, and assist partners in support of the campaign. Maintain excellent communication with ABC staff about activities and finances, and produce articles for publicity and website. Position Requirements: • Bachelor's degree or higher in communications or political science, or a related field with knowledge of conservation and management needs of birds, or equivalent experience. Creativity and demonstrated leadership skills required. • Proven ability to manage multiple projects, produce effective results. Entrepreneurial spirit. • Proven ability to meet deadlines. Ability to find solutions and demonstrate tenacity for difficult or long-term projects. • Previous experience building partnerships and working collaboratively with other organizations. • An outgoing, positive, persuasive manner and predisposition for collaboration, but with ability to work both independently and as part of a team. • Knowledge of birds preferred. • Excellent writing, presentation, and organizational skills. • Willing and able to travel frequently. To Apply: Please follow the link to apply online at BambooHR: https://abcbirds.bamboohr.com/jobs/view.php?id=20 If you have trouble with the site, please send your cover letter and resume as ONE document to HR@abcbirds.org Steve Holmer Vice President of Policy American Bird Conservancy & Director, Bird Conservation Alliance 202-888-7490 sholmer@abcbirds.org
  4. This news and analysis are provided by the Ornithological Council, a consortium supported by 11 ornithological societies. Join or renew your membership in your ornithological society if you value the services these societies provide to you, including Ornithology Exchange and the Ornithological Council! Over the past several months, scientific organizations, including the American Ornithological Society and the Ornithological Council, have expressed concern and objected to the planned closure of the USGS Biological Survey Unit, housed at the National Museum of Natural History at the Smithsonian. The planned closure was premised on the FY18 budget proposed by the Administration which called for drastic cuts in non-defense discretionary spending. Every agency was told to determine how it would meet these drastic reductions, including program closures. The USGS Ecosystems program marked the Biological Survey Unit, among others, for closure. The American Ornithological Society joined with the American Society of Mammalogists in protesting this plan, via a letter published in SCIENCE. The Ornithological Council and other scientific organizations voiced objections to USGS leadership. Nonetheless, the Ecosystems program initiated actual measures to close the program and re-locate the staff. Meanwhile, the Ornithological Council continued to protest, pointing out that no actual budget cuts had yet occurred. Indeed, a few weeks ago, a budget resolution was enacted that raised non-defense discretionary spending caps by more than $100 billion. The Omnibus appropriations bill for FY18 (what's left of it) that is likely to include a small increase (about 1%) for USGS. No decrease.*** Another plea to the Ecosystems leadership pointing out that there would likely be no decrease brought a positive response! The Ornithological Council was informed that if funds are in fact available, the Biological Survey Unit WILL be restored! ***This is a very "top-line" number. What Congress appropriates to any particular agency does not necessarily translate into an increase for each unit of the agency or for every program. The next stage in the process is called a "current year plan" in which the appropriated funds are actually apportioned within the agency.
  5. Ellen Paul

    Jim Rising 1942 - 2018

    http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/thestar/obituary.aspx?n=james-david-rising&pid=188478571 RISING, James David Born August 10, 1942 in Kansas City, Missouri, died on March 13, 2018, in Toronto, Ontario, from complications following surgery. Jim, as he was known by anyone after first meeting, preferred a t-shirt and jeans to a shirt and tie. He relished his time studying birds in the field, often becoming so absorbed in his work that he forgot his own personal safety, returning home after unsought adventures with bears, scorpions, poisonous snakes, and barely passable roads, from the Arctic to the tropics. He loved his 40 years of teaching at the University of Toronto and his research on the evolution, systematics, and taxonomy of birds, especially orioles and the widespread Savannah Sparrow. His other passions, besides baseball (especially the Toronto Blue Jays) included writing, reading about history, and studying current changes in taxonomy due to new molecular evidence. He served as a member of the American Ornithologists' Union Committee on Classification and Nomenclature and, after retirement from teaching in 2009, remained active in academic organizations, especially the Wilson Ornithological Society. Outside of work, Jim always went out of his way to spend time with his family. Never a Boy Scout himself as a child, when his sons were scouts, he volunteered to lead Boy Scout trips and to sell Christmas trees to raise funds, organized his schedule around elementary school outings, and got up in the wee hours of morning to drive to youth hockey games. As the neighbourhood scientist - a role that developed from Jim's kind and gregarious personality - he was also regularly called upon to help local children who had found dead or wounded birds or other animals, and once ended up briefly keeping a raccoon named "Bandit" in his basement (the ill-advised pet of an overwhelmed neighbour) until he could relocate it outside the city. Jim's statistical approach to scientific research spilled over into his love of baseball, and he was an early devotee of author and analyst Bill James's "sabermetric" approach to the game. Jim would combine his two passions, measuring and weighing scientific specimens on a card table while watching baseball, occasionally looking up to question a decision to call for a sacrifice bunt or an ill-advised steal attempt. When a scholarship to assist students in taking field courses was set up in his name by the University of Toronto's Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology when he retired, Jim was delighted. He would have appreciated donations to the James D. Rising Scholarship fund. http://www.eeb.utoronto.ca/outreach/support_us/givetoeeb.htm Jim will be greatly missed by his wife of 52 years, Trudy; his sons, David (Heather) and John (Darla); his three grandsons (Justus, Nigel, and Fintan), whom he adored; and his brothers, Dean Rising and John Rising. His family invite friends, colleagues, and former students to a gathering in Jim's memory, to be held on Friday, March 23, 2018, from 2:00 to 5:00 p.m., at the University of Toronto Faculty Club, 41 Willcocks Street, Toronto (416-978-6325). Our family wishes to commend the fine and caring staff of Unit 5e of Baycrest Hospital. Their attention to ensuring that Jim's last months of life were comfortable and as stimulating as possible was wonderful. We sincerely thank you.
  6. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/21/climate/australia-feathers.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=mini-moth&region=top-stories-below&WT.nav=top-stories-below Where Do Birds Flock Together? Australians Are Mailing In Feathers to Help Find OutKate Brandis, an Australian researcher, has enlisted the public to help her track elusive waterfowl as the country’s wetlands disappear. The birds’ mysterious movements have long baffled Dr. Brandis and others in her field: Where do the birds come from, and where do they go afterward? “Because we don’t track our birds, we have no idea,” she said. Traditional tracking methods, like banding birds, have not fared well in Australia. Since 1955, researchers have banded almost 57,000 straw-necked ibises. Just 15 of them were seen alive again. (An additional 360 were found dead.) In part, the low resighting numbers can be explained by the fact that many birds, like the ibis, have a high mortality rate. Another factor is simply Australia’s size: Inland birds often go to places where people do not. Dr. Brandis is the first to do this kind of work in Australia. Meanwhile, for citizen scientists like Mrs. Kemp and her husband, the feather-mapping project has inspired a new passion. “We weren’t really into birds,” Mrs. Kemp said. “But now, we are.”
  7. Two postdoctoral scholars for an initial term of 1 year with usual renewal to 2-3 years but the possibility of staying for 5 with an especially good fit. These scholars will need to be interested in facilitating interdisciplinary undergraduate research. A strong biostatistics background is required. There will be plenty of time for research. Please refer any interested parties to me with questions. Should be lots of fun. Postdoctoral Researcher University of Texas at Austin The Clarke Lab at the Jackson School of Geosciences seeks an innovative ornithologist or vertebrate paleontologist to join an active research group interested in the evolution of birds. The ideal postdoctoral candidate has a strong background in systematics, comparative methods and avian life history, anatomy or physiology. Strengths in other methods and questions relevant to study of the evolution of birds in deep time will also be considered. The postdoctoral appointment will involve active research, publication, and education activities directly related to an HHMI funded project concerning pioneering new approaches for interdisciplinary research training for undergraduate and graduate students. One major focus of our lab will be the evolution of the avian vocal organ in crown birds, an interest in this project is specifically desired. Specific expectations include: a desire to be deeply involved with further development and assessment of a novel research methods course for undergraduates and graduate students, to run a basic introduction to R module in the Spring course, co-supervising independent research related to your own and Clarke lab projects that will involve extended travel to a partner lab to collect data. The appointment is for an initial one-year term renewable upon progress review. The salary is ~$48,000 per year plus benefits. A PhD is required prior to the start of the appointment. Application materials include: 1. a CV; 2. an extended cover letter that should detail research interests and methodological approaches employed to date as well as, 3., a list of the names and full contact information for at least 3 references. Please address questions and the submitted application materials (as a single pdf with the subject “Postdoc.”) to Julia_Clarke@jsg.utexas.edu. The position is open effective immediately and will remain open until filled. The ideal start date is Sept 1. Application materials should be received April 15. UT Austin is an Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. The position is considered security sensitive; conviction verification conducted on applicant selected. Thank you! Julia Julia Clarke HHMI Professor Wilson Centennial Professor in Vertebrate Paleontology Department of Geological Sciences The University of Texas at Austin 2275 Speedway Stop C9000 Austin, TX 78712 – 1722 t: 512-232-7563 www.juliaclarke-paleolab.com http://www.jsg.utexas.edu/researcher/julia_clarke/-- Provost’s Teaching Fellow Julia Clarke HHMI Professor Wilson Professor in Vertebrate Paleontology Department of Geological Sciences The University of Texas at Austin 2275 Speedway Stop C9000 Austin, TX 78712 – 1722 t: 512-232-7563 www.juliaclarke-paleolab.com http://www.jsg.utexas.edu/researcher/julia_clarke/-- Provost’s Teaching Fellow
  8. Ellen Paul

    Museum specialist

    The Department of Ornithology, American Museum of Natural History, is now searching for a full-time Museum Specialist. Job duties include participation in care of collections, assistance in collection moves, specimen cleaning, processing information requests and loans, integrated pest management, specimen cataloging and databasing, and assisting visitors. Other duties as assigned. Requirements include a bachelor's degree in biology. Work or academic experience with birds, previous museum experience, and a background in systematics and/or vertebrate morphology are desirable. Applicants should have the ability to work well with others and work independently when necessary, have good manual dexterity sufficient for duties above, and have attention to detail and strong computer skills. Prospective candidates should apply to the AMNH website at: https://pa495.peopleadmin.com/applicants/jsp/shared/position/JobDetails_css.jsp. We ask applicants to include a cover letter detailing their qualifications. The Department will begin screening applicants 28 March.
  9. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2018/03/02/ravens-mated-another-species-into-oblivion-their-twisted-family-tree-shows/?utm_term=.a1a1aa7d8d05 And here is a link to the actual paper: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-018-03294-w
  10. For those considering attending the AFO-WOS meeting here in June, don't forget that the deadline for travel award applications is MARCH 2nd! The deadline for early bird rates is March 30th, which will be here before you know it! Information about applying for travel awards, as well as registration, abstract submission, and other meeting details can be found at www.cvent.com/d/4tqzbk.
  11. The Southern Sierra Research Station is excited to offer Institute for Bird Populations Advanced Bird Banding Course. Classes fill quickly, so be sure to register early! The Advanced Bird Banding Course is limited to 9 participants and will be taught by Lauren Helton of IBP (Institute for Bird Populations) Dates: Sept 10-14, 2018 This advanced bird banding class is designed to help participants fine tune the banding skills they already possess and to advance their comprehension of molt strategies and ability to recognize molt limits and plumages on birds in hand. Classes are very individualized and the rate of progression will be dependent upon the skill level of the participants. There will be a concentration on details of feather morphology, plumages, and molt limits. We will spend the morning mist-netting and banding birds, and in the afternoon will have classroom lectures and discussions on ageing and molting songbirds. Some of the skills that will be reviewed and expanded upon in the morning field sessions include: operation of and removal of birds from mist nets so that extraction speeds and safety are increased bird-handling skills, e.g. using proper grips to minimize bird stress in-hand ageing and sexing techniques, e.g. fine tuning of skulling, scoring on the data sheet, recognizing molt limits Lectures and discussions in the afternoons cover: avian life histories molts plumages the role of banding in research and monitoring Before attending an advanced class, participants should be able to handle and set up mist-nets; be able to extract birds from mist-nets; and have familiarity with ageing hatch-year versus after-hatch-year birds. Cost: $850.00 A $150 non-refundable down payment is required to hold a spot in the class. Housing may be available at an additional cost on a first come, first serve basis. To register participants should email michelleatssrs@gmail.com. In the registration email, please include your name, address, and phone number where you can be reached. Please pay for the course using a credit card or pay pal account at: http://www.southerns...op/BirdBanding/. Alternatively, payment by check can be made payable to the Southern Sierra Research Station and mailed to the research station PO box mailing address: Southern Sierra Research Station P.O. Box 1316 Weldon, California 93283 phone: 760-378-3345 ssrs@southernsierraresearch.org
  12. The Southern Sierra Research Station, Weldon, CA, will host a fall Beginner Bird Banding course. The beginner course is intended for birders and wildlife biologists and will be taught by Patti Wohner. Patti has been banding passerines and near passerines on research projects for over 18 years and will teach necessary skills for monitoring and research programs involving bird banding. The specific skills taught will include: safe operation of mist nets, methods of extraction of birds from mist nets, bird-handling skills, a primer on in-hand ageing and sexing techniques, and data scoring and recording using MAPS protocol and forms. Target netting skills may also be taught depending on interest. Dates: September 17 - 21, 2018 The course will be taught at the height of migration in riparian forest at 3 MAPS sites in the Audubon Kern River Preserve. Each site has 10 mistnets and ample opportunities for each student to handle many different passerines and near-passerines including warblers, sparrows, woodpeckers, flycatchers, and others. Each day will consist of a morning practical mistnetting and banding birds, and an afternoon class session. Cost of the course with rustic lodging including breakfast and lunch is $2000/ person. Cost without lodging and food is $1500/ person. A $150 non-refundable down payment is required to hold a spot in the class. Classes fill quickly, so be sure to register early! The Beginner Bird Banding Course is limited to 6 participants! To register participants should email michelleatssrs@gmail.com. In the registration email, please include your name, address, and phone number where you can be reached. Please pay for the course using a credit card or pay pal account at: http://www.southerns...op/BirdBanding/ Alternatively, payment by check can be made payable to the Southern Sierra Research Station and mailed to the research station PO box mailing address: Southern Sierra Research Station P.O. Box 1316 Weldon, California 93283 phone: 760-378-3345 ssrsATsouthernsierraresearch.org
  13. Well-deserved, Anna! Anna Chalfoun, a University of Wyoming associate professor of zoology, will receive the first-ever Peter R. Stettenheim Service Award at the American Ornithological Society’s (AOS) annual meeting in mid-April. Chalfoun, also an assistant leader for the Wyoming Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, and a member of the UW Program in Ecology faculty, will receive an award certificate and honorarium at the meeting in Tucson, Ariz. She termed the upcoming honor as “an incredibly exciting surprise!” for her service to the AOS, which resulted after the merger of the Cooper Ornithological Society (COS) and the American Ornithologists’ Union (AOU) in 2017. The AOS is an international society devoted to advancing the scientific understanding of birds; enriching ornithology as a profession; and promoting a rigorous scientific basis for the conservation of birds. “I love the people and the mission of the society, and have enjoyed being at the forefront of societal operations,” says Chalfoun, who plans to attend the annual meeting in Tucson, Ariz. “As scientists and faculty, moreover, there tends to be more criticism than accolades, so this was a nice acknowledgment to receive.” Stettenheim, for whom the award is named, was a noted ornithologist. “I have never met him,” Chalfoun says of Stettenheim, who passed away in 2013. “But, he sounds like a person who epitomized passion for ornithology and mentoring, and was a consistent contributor to the ornithological leadership.” The award recognizes an individual established in his or her career, and who has performed outstanding and extensive service to the AOS. The award recognizes people who may have served in elected or appointed positions, but also emphasizes volunteer contributions, mentoring and committee participation. Chalfoun currently serves on the AOS Conservation Committee; was an AOS Council member from 2015-17; and was on the AOU-COS Merger Advisory Committee during 2016-17. She is currently revising the Birds of North America account for the Brewer’s sparrow and sage thrasher -- two sagebrush songbirds that she and her students study. She served on the Scientific Program Committee of the North American Ornithological Congress, based in Washington, D.C., from 2014-16. She was president-elect of the COS from 2015-17; was a member of the COS Board Nominations Committee in 2015; and was a COS Board member and student awards chair from 2011-14. Chalfoun started the student presentation feedback program for conference talks and poster presentations. The Wyoming Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit conducts ecological research to help better understand, manage and conserve animal populations. The unit’s applied research program builds knowledge about fish and wildlife populations, and communities by seeking general solutions to specific management and conservation challenges. Chalfoun’s research in her lab spans the disciplines of ecology, evolution, behavior and conservation biology; and diverse taxa, including birds, mammals and herpetofauna. Her main research focus is understanding the processes and factors that influence wildlife-habitat relationships, particularly in understanding why organisms select particular habitats and under what contexts such choices are adaptive. In 2014, Chalfoun received a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers. That year, she was among 102 researchers presented the award, the U.S. government’s highest honor for science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. Presidential Early Career Award winners are selected for their “pursuit of innovative research at the frontiers of science and technology, and their commitment to community service as demonstrated through scientific leadership, public education or community outreach.”
  14. the website of the Ornithological Council - has been providing information to ornithologists for the past 20 years with the generous hosting of the National Museum of Natural History. It's finally time to leave that nest and strike out on our own, so you can now find us right here: https://birdnet.org/ We have transferred all the content but we are still working on updating some content. The new site already features: Updates for all 50 state permitting pages The new literature review on the impacts of small unmanned aircraft on birds Of course, you will also find: Guidelines to the Use of Wild Birds in Research The Model Wildlife Protocol And much more, including the OC newsBRIEF, outlining all the work that OC does by and for ornithologists! BIRDNET is provided by the Ornithological Council, a consortium supported by 11 ornithological societies. Join or renew your membership in your ornithological society if you value the services these societies provide to you, including Ornithology Exchange and the Ornithological Council!
  15. My student and I are doing a study examining effect of holding bag composition on stress. What type of bag do you currently use? opaque cloth (muslin, cotton) mesh cloth combination Thanks! Renee' E. Carleton, DVM, PhD Associate Professor of Biology Berry College 2277 Martha Berry Highway, NW Box 430 Mount Berry, GA 30149 706-238-5892