Isle Royale Wolf-Moose News Article in “Nature”

The monumental Isle Royale Wolf/Moose Study, which has been active for more than fifty years, has been a riveting drama to follow. In recent years, the wolf population has been in decline, raising questions as to the future of the wolf on Isle Royale. Below-average temperatures this winter have created an ice bridge between Isle Royale and the mainland, a fairly-rare and potentially promising event for the wolves of Isle Royale. Read what Michigan Tech’s Rolf Peterson and John Vucetich have to say on the subject in this week’s issue of Nature and don’t miss the link to the editorial at the end of the article.

New Funding – Roth

Amber Roth has received $25,000 of funding from the Western Great Lakes Bird and Bat Observatory to coordinate the Midwest Landbird Migration Monitoring Network. For this award, Roth will write and edit the Midwest Landbird Migration Monitoring Network Strategic Plan in collaboration with the US Fish & Wildlife Service and the Western Great Lakes Bird and Bat Observatory. Along with the grant, comes Roth’s new title of Midwest Landbird Migration Monitoring Network Coordinator . The strategic plan will lay out a road map for coordinating bird monitoring and research efforts toward objectives of the Midwest Coordinated Bird Monitoring Partnership ( The goal of the plan is to provide guidance for improving usage of data generated by the network of partners across the Midwest to better address priority migration information needs at the regional scale.

Terry Sharik Appointed to Robbins Chair

Dr. Terry Sharik, dean of the School of Forest Resources & Environmental Science, Robbins Chair of Sustainable Resources

Congratulations to Terry Sharik, dean of the School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science, on his recent appointment to the Robbins Chair in Sustainable Resources. Sharik has made great progress in bringing together players from all aspects of sustainable resources in Michigan through his efforts with the Michigan Biomaterials Initiative. To learn more about the Michigan Biomaterials Initiative, visit the MTU Biomaterials main page.

The Wildlife Society 2013 Annual Conference

Michigan Tech Students Participating in Quiz Bowl

The Michigan Tech student chapter of The Wildlife Society had an excellent performance in the quiz bowl competition at The Wildlife Society 2013 Annual Conference, coming in fourth out of seventeen teams.  They were very nearly third, and played Humboldt State (2nd place & very tough) which is a success by most participants standards.  They beat Purdue in the 1st round, SUNY Cobleskill in the 2nd, lost to Humbolt in the 3rd, and barely lost to University of Tennessee in the deciding match for 3rd-4th place.

Visit from Yunnan Delegation

Signing the Memorandum of Understanding

A delegation from the Yunnan Academy of Forestry, Yunnan, China, visited the Michigan Tech School of Forest Resources & Environmental Science (SFRES) on October 10th-12th in a combined effort between Michigan Tech and the Yunnan Academy of Forestry to promote academic ties and international cooperation. SFRES professors and scientists presented to the delegation on topics varying from invasion ecology to wetland restoration to genetic mapping. The group from the Yunnan Academy of Forestry was also given the opportunity to visit local restoration sites, such as the Torch Lake Stamp Sands Restoration Site. During the three day visit, members of SFRES and the Yunnan Academy drafted a Memorandum of Understanding to recognize areas in which the two institutions may work together into the future. The two schools aim to work in conjunction in exploring mutually beneficial collaborative research projects as well as exploring the feasibility of initiatives, such as student and faculty exchanges, to promote cross-cultural learning.

Potvin research in print

Lynette Potvin ’08, currently an ecologist for the USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station in Houghton, Research Scientist Dana Richter (SFRES), Professor Martin Jurgensen (SFRES) and colleague, published the paper, “Association of Pinus banksiana Lamb. and Populus tremuloides Michx. Seedling Fine Roots with Sistotrema Brinkmannii (Bres.) J. Erikss. (Basidiomycotina),” in Mycorrhiza (2012), Vol. 22:631-638. The paper, which came out of Potvin’s master’s research, describes a previously non-described interaction between a decay fungus and the roots of tree seedlings and their symbiotic fungi, the exact role of which remains a mystery. (Tech Today, Nov. 1, 2012)

Orr receives Silver Medal Award

Professor Blair Orr, Michigan Technological University
Blair Orr

Professor Blair Orr (SFRES) has been awarded the Silver Medal Award by Michigan Tech’s Board of Control in recognition of his efforts to establish and grow the University’s Peace Corps Master’s International (PCMI) program. Orr is the second faculty member ever to receive the Board’s rarely awarded Silver Medal, which recognizes outstanding personal accomplishments of Michigan Tech alumni or friends of the university.

Tech’s PCMI program now is the largest in the nation and has held that distinction for seven years. Since Orr launched the program in forestry in 1995, PCMI at Michigan Tech has expanded to eight graduate programs in departments across campus.

Orr’s areas of expertise include forestry in developing nations, forest economics, and land use in the Upper Peninsula. Congratulations, Blair!

New Funding – Juneau and Tarasoff

Graduate student Kevyn Juneau (SFRES/ESC) and Co-PI Assistant Professor Catherine Tarasoff (SFRES) have received $5,000 from the US Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration, for “The Ecology and Control of the Invasive Species, Cirsium Arvense, Canada Thistle.”