Course weblog for BIO 697, a 3-credit graduate level course for the Fall 2004 semester at the University of Massachusetts Boston.
Professor: Dr. Jennifer Forman Orth

Monday, December 27, 2004

End of Course...

I just finished entering your grades on the official UMB website (not sure when they are accessible to you). I will try to email everyone's paper and course grades out tonight.

Thank you to everyone for making this course a great learning experience. I hope that you all found this to be a valuable addition to your graduate coursework. I enjoyed reading your papers and I look forward to submitting them to the state and regional agencies that requested the research.

Monday, December 06, 2004

More Tips for Your Presentation - A Review

Here is what I covered last week regarding how you should structure your talk:
  • Present to the class as if you were speaking to a panel that must decide whether to regulate your species in Massachusetts. Be clear, be concise, be informative.

  • Your talk, which can be no longer than 10 minutes, should include the following:
    • About the species: pictures, history, distribution
    • Assess the threat: Should your species be regulated? Eradicated? Ignored? Explain why or why not.

As always, this is a guide, not a mandatory structure. It is up to you to use what you've learned in class to determine what is important to say.

Tips for your paper

I am willing to look at an electronic version of your paper to give you general comments, as long as you get it to me within a reasonable period of time before your paper is due.

Tips for Your Presentation

Because some of you have asked:

1) Should you put citations in your presentation? Please give proper credit for any images and novel statements in your Powerpoint presentation, using a short citation (Forman Orth 2004) or URL if author and year of a website is not clear. Alert students will note that I have stuck to this format during my presentations throughout the semester.

2) What is a "novel statement"? Use your judgement: "The Asian clam is a bivalve native to Asia"...not so novel. "The Asian clam communicates telepathically with its prey"...deserves the (Edward 2001) after it.

3) Does this mean I need to put full references at the end of my presentation? No, there won't be enough time for anyone to write them down anyway. The citations are enough so that someone interested could come up to you later and say "Hey, can you email me the full citation for Edward 2001?"

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Reading Assignments for 12/7 - 12/9

Tuesday, Dec. 7 - Outreach & Species Lists
  1. Effectiveness in Invasive Species Outreach (Reading: "Sea Grant and Invasive Aquatic Plants: A National Outreach Initiative." 2001. Crawford et al. Journal of Aquatic Plant Management, v. 39, pp. 8-11. [.pdf])
  2. A Rainbow of Species Lists...Which Color is Best?


Thursday, Dec. 9, 8:00am-10:00am
- Management Plans & Student Presentations

Guest Speaker:
Jay Baker, Coastal Zone Management, Northeast Aquatic Species Nuisance Panel

Reading: pp. 32-53 in "The Massachusetts Aquatic Invasive Species Management Plan." Massachusetts Aquatic Nuisance Species Working Group. [Paper copies available in copy room on top of the white cabinet - ask someone in the Bio Office if you need help]

Student Presentations will begin today, note the extended class time!

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Reading Assignments for 11/30 - 12/2

Tuesday, Nov. 30 - BioControl II

A reading and a homework assignment for today's class:
  • Read: "Developing the options for managing marine pests: specificity trials on the parasitic castrator, Sacculina carcini, against the European crab, Carcinus maenas, and related
    species." by R.E. Thresher, M. Werner, J.T. Høeg, I. Svane, H. Glenner, N.E. Murphy, and C. Wittwer. 2000. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology. v. 254 pp. 37-51. [on Prometheus]

  • Homework: Come to class prepared to discuss:
    1. What biological controls have been used -or- could be used for your study species?
    2. Do you think "parasitic castration" can be an effective biocontrol in a marine environment? In any environment?

Thursday, Dec. 2 - Fire Ecology

Guest speaker: Julie Richburg, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  • "Effects of Alien Plants on Fire Regimes" by Brooks, M. L., C. M. D’Antonio, D. M. Richardson, J. B. Grace, J. E. Keeley, J. M. DiTomaso, R. J. Hobbs, M. Pellant, and D. Pyke. 2004. Bioscience 54(7) pp. 677-688. [.pdf]

We will also use Thursday's class to finish up our discussion of invasive species controls.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Reading Assignments for 11/23

We begin our discussion of biological controls this week with a guest lecture from Fred SaintOurs. Fred will be speaking on Tuesday about the use of biocontrols to manage purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria). To prepare yourself for Fred's talk, please read the articles below, and be sure to think of some good questions to ask him!

  • Purple Loosestrife, Ch. 11 in Biological Control of Invasive Plants in the Eastern United States, Van Driesche, R., et al., 2002, USDA Forest Service Publication FHTET-2002-04, 413 p. (If you prefer, you can download this document as a .pdf from this link.)
  • "Indirect effects of host-specific biological control agents." by D. Pearson and R. Callaway. 2003. Trends in Ecology and Evolution, 18(9), pp. 456-461. [via Prometheus]
  • Short response to Pearson and Callaway article by Thomas et al. (TREE 19(2)) [via Prometheus]

There is no class Thursday due to the Thanksgiving holiday.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

"No-Risk" Assessment

Some of you have noticed that the list of mimimum requirements for your species reports includes "Risk Assessment." Originally I was going to have you do a risk assessment for your species in class, but because we ended up working on the pathways risk assessment instead, we will no longer be doing that. If someone's already done one for your species, do report the results, but you are not required to complete your own. Don't forget, though, that you should conclude your report with a discussion of whether your species is a threat to Massachusetts or the water off our coast.

Saturday, November 13, 2004

Field Trip still on

Field trip is still on as of 1am 7am Saturday morning...bring your snow shoes (kidding). If anything changes I will post here, or email me.