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Ornithology Exchange

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Providing resources to women in ornithology.

  1. What's new in this group
  2. http://www.knutielab.com/women-in-science.html Popular Articles: The Untold History of Women in Science and Technology A 9-Year-Old’s Letter to Obama About Putting a Woman on U.S. Currency — and His Response (March 2015) Speaking While Female (January 2015) Slate.com: Don't worry your pretty little heads (November 2014) 10 Simple Words Every Girl Should Learn (May 2014) The End of Male Supremacy (March 2015) The Future of the Post-doc (April 2015) Radio: Science Friday: Writing Women Back Into Science (March 20, 2015) My Favorite Blogs: Isis the Scientist SoapboxScience Dynamic Ecology | Women-in-Science The Controversy: John Oliver takes on Miss America's "Scholarship" program John Oliver takes on the Wage Gap
  3. There's a new virtual exhibition on early women in science, including some ornithologists, at the biodiversity library exhibition. http://earlywomeninscience.biodiversityexhibition.com/en
  4. Hi Sara - definitely please feel free to use it. If you need more info contact me. You have to wonder how many of them were distractingly sexy. Or cried..
  5. Hi Ellen Paul! I am a staff member at the Detroit Audubon Society and I am putting together our Summer Newsletter right now. I think your list of women ornithologists is great - may I re-print it in our newsletter with credit? Thanks!
  6. Workshop on parenting and being a scientist at the 2015 meeting. . Raising your chicks as an ornithologist. Led by Kim Sullivan. This interactive, lunchtime workshop is for experienced and new parents as well as those considering parenthood. Ornithologists produce few children compared to other academic disciplines. Many ornithologists cite the difficulties of combining field work with family formation. This workshop will allow participants to share information on what works in combining their professional life with parenting. We will discuss what to say when applying for jobs, negotiating parental leave, child care strategies and resources, field work solutions, and organizing your life to get your work done. Schedule: Lunchtime July 31 – Exact time to be determined. Contact: Kim Sullivan: kim[dot]sullivan[at]usu[dot]edu
  7. Furmansky, Dyana Z. (2009). Rosalie Edge, Hawk of Mercy: The Activist Who Saved Nature from the Conservationists. University of Georgia Press. Wonder if one person can really make a difference? Read this book about a New York City socialite, suffragist, and amateur birdwatcher who was responsible, among other things, in saving thousands of hawks with the establishment of Hawk Mountain in Pennsylvania. She also disseminated thousands of fliers (mass communication before email and twitter) for national grassroots campaigns to create Olympic National Park and Kings Canyon National Park. Audubon leaders would quake when she walked into their meetings. A profile of her in The New Yorker described her as "the only honest, unselfish, indomitable hellcat in the history of conservation" (New Yorker, April 17, 1948). More about her at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosalie_Edge
  8. Know of others? Feel free to add them to the list! Research is a Passion with Me: the Autobiography of a Bird Lover. Margaret Morse Nice (1979). Of course, the prestigious Wilson Ornithological Society is named for Margaret Morse Nice, the first woman president of that society. She was also the second woman to be awarded the Brewster medal by the American Ornithologists' Union. Ornithologist Robert Dickerman named a Mexican subspecies of song sparrow (Melospiza melodia niceae) after her. In addition to 250 papers, Nice also published Watchers at the Nest (1939) and Birds of Oklahoma (1924).
  9. Though not specific to ornithology, I thought this new book might appeal to some readers of this forum. http://www.randomhouse.com/book/247131/headstrong-by-rachel-swaby/9781101890561/ Synopsis Fifty-two inspiring and insightful profiles of history’s brightest female scientists. In 2013, the New York Times published an obituary for Yvonne Brill. It began: “She made a mean beef stroganoff, followed her husband from job to job, and took eight years off from work to raise three children.” It wasn’t until the second paragraph that readers discovered why the Times had devoted several hundred words to her life: Brill was a brilliant rocket scientist who invented a propulsion system to keep communications satellites in orbit, and had recently been awarded the National Medal of Technology and Innovation. Among the questions the obituary—and consequent outcry—prompted were, Who are the role models for today’s female scientists, and where can we find the stories that cast them in their true light? Headstrong delivers a powerful, global, and engaging response. Covering Nobel Prize winners and major innovators, as well as lesser-known but hugely significant scientists who influence our every day, Rachel Swaby’s vibrant profiles span centuries of courageous thinkers and illustrate how each one’s ideas developed, from their first moment of scientific engagement through the research and discovery for which they’re best known. This fascinating tour reveals these 52 women at their best—while encouraging and inspiring a new generation of girls to put on their lab coats.
  10. Kim Sullivan (one of our moderators) has been to many meetings with her children and she has tried many options: Over the years I used a number of child care situations at meetings including: staying at my parent's house and commuting to a meeting, hiring a child care provider to attend the meeting with me, bringing my husband along to care for one or both children, having my husband and children join me at the meeting for a vacation, finding a day care center near the meeting, hiring an undergraduate student at the hosting university, letting my two children explore the campus or town (pre-teen and teen years), letting one or both children spend some time in the hotel room on their own, having children sit in the hall outside the meeting room, arranging for a child to spend the day with a friend in the area and bringing infants to a board meeting. Based on all of these experiences, my recommendations are: 1) For young children it really helps to have someone with you who is not attending the meeting. That way you can get to the talks and events that are most important to you and arrange to see the people you need to see. 2) My family was willing to turn meetings into a vacation if the meeting was in a desirable location (San Diego, Hawaii, Washington DC, Veracruz, Jackson Hole). Stay at a nice hotel your family will enjoy and use frequent flyer miles for all the tickets. 3) During the summer, many day care centers have space available when families go on vacation. Check out day care centers close to the meeting location if you need full or part time day care for a young child. They are usually not open at night or on weekends. Summer programs for school age children may also have space available due to children going on vacations. 4) Contact the meeting organizers to find undergraduate students you can hire. This can be very useful if you want to attend an evening or weekend event. If the meeting is held in a large hotel, the hotel usually has a list of babysitters available although they tend to be very expensive. 5) Go to meetings where you have family in the area that are willing to take care of your children. 6). When my children were pre-teens and teens, they would spend some time on their own in the hotel room. Book a hotel room at the conference center so you can check on them or they can call you if they need you. 7). Don't plan on going to as many talks, events or meetings when you have children with you as you do when you are alone. Figure out in advance what are the most important talks and events and schedule time with your children around these. Go to a few talks, then go swimming at the resort pool, then go to a few talks followed by a short hike. Plan something that your children will enjoy during the trip. 8). Prepare your talk or poster ahead of time and be ready to bail on the meeting if you have to. I have sent talks and posters with other meeting attendees when my children became sick right before a meeting. 9). I found the most difficult parts of the meetings were all day board meetings on weekends and evening events. This is where having someone come with you to provide childcare or hiring local undergraduates really helps. 10) Contact your institution to see if they have a travel funds to cover daycare at the meeting or the additional travel expenses of taking a caretaker to the meeting. Kim
  11. What works, what doesn't; what would you want meeting organizers to know? With the NAOC coming up in Washington, D.C. in August 2016, many will no doubt have their kids in tow and build a family vacation around the meeting. Share your experiences and suggestions and help the NAOC local committee make this a good experience for you and your kids.
  12. 0759_001-1.pdf It can be tough to take kids into the field. My daughter did better than my son so I took her more often. I took her out in the field as a 9 month old. She was in a pack and play I set up while I was observing juncos. She also helped net song sparrows when she was 4. Both kids loved to band birds and became proficient at setting up nets and taking birds out of the nets.
  13. How many of these incredible women in ornithology can you identify? NO GOOGLING! Many of these women have had equally brilliant male ornithological spouses. Bonus points if you can name those men. 1. This woman was the only female graduate student of Aldo Leopold. She was known for her work on Greater Prairie-Chicken and on birds of prey. Here's the give-away clue: she called her field assistants "gabboons." 2. This woman was the first female Fellow of the American Ornithologists' Union. Though an Easterner, she wrote the classic Handbook of the Birds of the Western States, based in large part on her travels through California and the New Mexico and Arizona territories. 3. There is nothing ordinary about this extraordinary woman and her delightful little gray songbirds. She has been awarded the Margaret Morse Nice medal by the Wilson Ornithological Society and the Coues Award by the American Ornithologists' Union. 4. Like so many others, an incidental course in natural history lured this tropical biologist away from her planned pre-med major. Elected to the National Academy of Science in 1988, she is also a recipient of the Alexander Skutch award for Excellence in Tropical Ornithology (awarded by the Association of Field Ornithologists). She also managed to find time to serve as the president of the Cooper Ornithological Society. 5. When birds and planes collide, this is the go-to woman! 6. To know her is to love her, as Tiko and her many ornithological progeny would attest. She has brilliant plumage, unlike the shorebirds and waterbirds she is known for studying, along with not a few reptiles and amphibians. 7. Imagine seeing evolution as it happens by watching just a single bird. Imagine having a single field site for 40 years, heirs of Darwin himself. Imagine being awarded the Darwin-Wallace medal, an honor bestowed only once every 50 years, as well as the Kyoto Prize. And from the ornithologists, the Loye and Alden Miller Research Award (Cooper Ornithological Society) and the Margaret Morse Nice Medal (Wilson Ornithological Society). 8. You can have three kids, go back to grad school, and earn your doctorate at age 45. Some might think that loony,but 40 years later, she can still yodel with the best of them! 9. For the past FIFTY years, this ornithologist has lived with her avian subjects; she makes do without running water or electricity while terning the place into a luxury hotel for 3,000 pairs of shorebirds. Give up? Answers are in the attached file. WomenOrnithologyQuiz.docx
  14. I have been really lucky. When I have taught at the Audubon Camp in Maine, the director/staff offered for me to bring my daughter and my mother (who played nanny). At my field site, I was not comfortable taking my daughter most of the time (I just didn't have time to watch her as carefully as I would need with lots of breeding gulls guarding their nests, eggs, and chicks). However, when she was five I was able to take her with me there, and she loved it. She's only 11 and is not interested in field ecology (or even biology) as a potential career. However, I think she has a love of nature and a respect for what her mom does.
  15. Every working parent has the summertime problem - what do the kids do when you are at work? Who watches over them? For ornithologists with families, the situation is even more challenging because work often means traveling to remote locations or overseas, often living in tents or trailers. There are no local babysitters or day camps. Did you take your kids into the field with you? Share your experiences here; give a hand up to those who are just now dealing with this issue. It would also be very interesting to know how the experience influenced your kids. Did they appreciate nature, biology, and science as a result or would they rather have stayed home to play with friends? Did it influence what they chose to study in school and their career choices?
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