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News Archive

Current Issue of LA Agriculture
Features RNR Faculty and Students

The fall 2017 issue of Louisiana Agriculture magazine focuses on nutrient management, a term that means LSU AgCenter scientists are working hard to keep Louisiana’s finite water supply wholesome and prevent environmental degradation from crop and livestock production, garden and golf course management, and community and industrial waste near waterbodies. Check the links below to learn more about the many projects they are engaged in to help preserve water resources and keep Louisiana farmers in business. If you would like a printed copy of this issue, or if you have any questions, please contact the editor, Linda Benedict. The LSU AgCenter is here to serve you.

Several RNR faculty (Drs. Richard Keim, Michael Blazier, Yi-jun Xu, and Megan La Peyre) and students (Jeremy Reiman, Emily DelDuco, Songjie He, and Phillip Westbrook) have articles in the latest issue of Louisiana Agriculture.

Xu Lab Hydrology Students Present at AGU Fall Meeting in New Orleans

Four graduates (Emily DelDuco, Bo Wang, Songjie He, and Jeremy Reiman) and one undergraduate student (Skylar Bueche) from SRNR presented their studies at the 2017 American Geophysical Union (AGU) Fall Meeting. The AGU meeting was held on December 11 - 15, in New Orleans. The AGU fall meeting is the world’s largest and most important conference in Earth Science (and it is a pretty big deal for students to make a presentation there).

The meeting and the presentations were highlighted in several news releases: in the Times Picayune (LINK) and the AGU Press office (LINK)

Professorship Awarded
to Dr. Stouffer

Congratulations to Dr. Phil Stouffer for being named the Lee F. Mason LSU Alumni Association Departmental Professor in the College of Agriculture. Applications for this professorship were college-wide and the applicant pool was very competitive. Good job Phil, you are very deserving!

RNR Alum Awarded AFS
Golden Membership Award

RNR alumnus, Dugan Sabins (MS Fisheries Science 1973) was recently award the American Fisheries Society’s Golden Membership Award at the 147th AFS Annual Meeting in Tampa, Florida.

Dugan is a retired Senior Environmental Scientist with the Office of Environmental Assessment of the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ). He has over 40 years of experience in water resources and the aquatic sciences. Among his experiences are a multi-year limnological study of the Atchafalaya Basin and lower Mississippi River. While at DEQ he was had technical and management responsibilities for surface water quality standards, monitoring and assessment, and with the nonpoint source program.

Dugan represented DEQ on the Management Committee of the Gulf of Mexico Program, the Gulf of Mexico Alliance, the Lower Mississippi River Conservation Committee, and the Coordinating Committee of the Mississippi River/Gulf of Mexico Watershed Nutrient Task Force (Gulf Hypoxia Task Force). He has also served as president of the Louisiana Chapter of the American Fisheries Society and the Louisiana Water Environment Association. Congratulations to Dugan Sabins for a great career and this special honor!!

NYT Highlights RNR Research
on Mottled Ducks

What Swims Like a Duck and Quacks Like a Duck Could Be a Hybrid of Two Duck Species. This is the title of the New York Times (NYT)article highlighting reseach done by Robert Ford (MS, RNR) and Dr. Sabrina Taylor. The study published Thursday in The Condor: Ornithological Applications suggests the riddling possibility that two duck species forming a hybrid species could one day leave us with less diversity among North American ducks.

Dr. Taylor was interviewed For the NYT article, which appears in the 11 September 2017 edition. Check it out!

Dr. Terry Tiersch named to National Genetic Resources Advisory Council

Dr. Terrence TierschDr. Terrence Tiersch, Professor in the School of Renewable Natural Resources, and Director of the Aquatic Germplasm and Genetic Resources Center, has been appointed to a 2-year term on the National Genetic Resources Advisory Council.

The Advisory Council formulates recommendations on actions and policies for the collection, maintenance, and utilization of genetic resources; makes recommendations for coordination of genetic resources plans of several domestic and international organizations, and advises the Secretary of Agriculture and the Director of the National Genetic Resources Program of new and innovative approaches for conservation of genetic resources.

More recently, the Council was charged with advising the U.S. Department of Agriculture on ways to ensure that the National Genetic Resources Program serves the needs of all farmers for high quality and diverse germplasm, as well as how to develop a broad strategy for maintaining biodiversity available to agriculture, and strengthening public sector breeding capacities.

Tiersch is the first aquatic species scientist to serve on the Council.

Bioenergy Insight Conference 2017: Q&A session with LFPDCs Richard Vlosky

The Bioenergy Insight Conference, a world-leading bioenergy event, will be held in Edinburgh, Scotland, on 4 and 5 October 2017, covering the whole bioenergy supply chain. The show will focus on all the new developments and the latest challenges. Topics covered in the seminars include the global biomass market, financing bioenergy projects, and ensuring sustainability at scale.

Dr. Richard Vlosky, Professor and Director of the Louisiana Forest Products Development Center will be a major speaker at this event. As a prelude to this event, Dr. Vlosky introduces the topic of Bioenery, economics, and industry trends in a Q&A featured in the most recent Bioenergy Insight news bulletin.

His talk at the conference will be entitled: Update on the wood-based bioenergy sector in North America. Registration information is available on the Bioenergy Insight 2017 Conference and Expo site.

RNR with Governor's School of Agriculture

Dr. Luke Laborde of the School of Renewable Natural Resources led the Governor's School for Agricultural Sciences for an overnight field trip at Rockefeller State Wildlife Refuge.

The Governor's School brings to campus 15 high school juniors intending to major in agricultural sciences. Counselors to the program included RNR students Amanda Benge, Jazmyn Bernard, and Josef Schuster. The visit was hosted by LDWF refuge staff Gabe Giffin, Katie Barnes, and Phillip Trosclair.

Forest Product Society International Conference

Check out the Dr. Vlosky’s interview at the recent 71st annual Forest Product Society International Conference held at Mississippi State University [June 26, 2017].

Dr. Vlosky, the Director of the the Louisiana Forest Products Development Center, is the current Society president.

Traditional Graduate Fellows Grant Awarded

RNR Faculty member, Dr. Sabrina Taylor, recently received a Traditional Graduate Fellows Grant from the Louisiana Board of Regents to increase the quality and diversity of graduate students entering the School’s Graduate Program.

Any RNR faculty member who provided information for the proposal can nominate a student for this fellowship. One PhD student will be selected by a committee to receive $30,000/year and a tuition waiver for four years. Nominated students with high GPAs & GREs, research experience, good letters for reference, and who increase the School’s diversity will be considered highly competitive.

The fellowship will begin in the Fall 2018 semester. Dr. Taylor will make every effort to extend this funding by submitting grant proposals in subsequent years.

LFPDC Alumnus Named International Fellow

Dr. Francisco Aguilar, LFPDC alumnusDr. Francisco Aguilar, a former student of Dr. Richard Vlosky (Directory, Louisiana Forest Products Development Center - LFPDC) has been awared the 2017 Brady J. Deaton Fellow in International Agriculture by the Universty of Missouri College of Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources (CANFR).

Francisco is an Associate Professor of Forestry, on the faculty since 2009. His research focuses in two areas: the economics of wood and non-wood products, and policy and land management. He follows the wood energy market and its competitiveness as compared to other energy sources.

Congratulations to Dr. Aguilar. More information about him is available at the CNFAR

Vlosky Appointed to Sustainable Biomass Program Working Group

Rich Vlosky

Richard Vlosky, Director and Professor, Louisiana Forest Products Development Center, and Crosby Land & Resources Endowed Professor of Forest Sector Business Development, in the LSU AgCenter, was appointed to represent Louisiana State University on the Sustainable Biomass Program (SBP) Working Group.

SBP, based out of the United Kingdom, is a unique certification system designed for woody biomass, mostly in the form of wood pellets and wood chips, used in industrial, large-scale energy production. The Working Group, with global membership, was established to review current certification guidelines.

Six NREM Degree Programs Offered by RNR Receive Accreditation from the Society of American Foresters

RNR Building, LSU

Six areas of concentration are now accredited by the Society of American Foresters.

Three of the AOCs (Forest Resource Management, Forest Enterprise, and Wildlife Habitat Conservation and Management) meet the standards for accreditation under SAF’s traditional Forestry program. The other three AOCs (Conservation Biology, Ecological Restoration, and Wetland Science) meet the standards for accreditation under SAF’s new program called Natural Resource and Ecosystem Management.

Accreditation is a mark of academic quality, a demonstration of accountability, and a promise of continued planning for the future.

The forestry program in RNR has been continuously accredited by SAF since 1936, the first year SAF started its 81-year-old accreditation program. The Society of American Foresters established the standards for accrediting natural resource and ecosystem management programs in 2014 to create educational criteria that train resource professional in the art and science of sustaining ecosystem composition, structure, and function that satisfy long-term objectives. RNR’s long history of accreditation reflects the School’s ability to identify and respond to the evolving needs of society from its natural resources.

Director of LFPDC Installed as
President of Forest Products Society

Richard Vlosky, Director, Louisiana Forest Products Development Center, LSU AgCenter, was installed as President of the Forest Products Society at the Society’s 70th International Convention in Portland, Oregon on June 29, 2016. The Forest Products Society, the largest international not-for-profit technical association, was founded in 1947 to provide an information network for all segments of the forest products industry.

Dr. Bill Kelso: Graduate School Headliner

Dr. Bill Kelso, Faculty Focus

Dr. Bill Kelso is one of the subjects of the the Faculty Focus for the month of June in the LSU Graduate School Newsletter (volume 5). Click the image above for a PDF of Dr. Kelso's profile. The most current newsletter is available from the Graduate School Home page.

Dr. Taylor Recognized as 'Rising Star'

Dr. Sabrina Taylor Congratulations to Dr. Sabrina Taylor, named by the LSU Alumni Association as one of this year's "Rising Stars"

Each spring, the University recognizes the teaching, research, and service accomplishmets of its faculty with more than 120 awards presented at the Distinguished Faculty Awards Ceremony. Twenty-four of the individuals honored this year received awards underwritten by the LSU Alumni Association, including the ten recipients of the new Rising Faculty Research Awards

More information on Dr. Taylor and her research program (and the other recipients of this year's recognition) is available in the current issue of the LSU Alumni Magazine. The online edition for Winter 2015/volume 91, number 4, can be accessed here.

Bonnet Carre Spillway opens again


Flooding along the Mississippi River has led to the opening of the Bonnet Carre Spillway for the second time in five years. LSU AgCenter correspondent Craig Gautreaux has the story on how the opening affects the ecology of the outflow area, with comments by Dr. Richard Keim, RNR Faculty and LSU AgCenter Forested Wetland Hydrologist.


Louisiana Forest Industry Website Gets Update

BATON ROUGE, La. – The LSU AgCenter recently updated an online directory with current information about forest products companies in Louisiana.

The site allows users to search more than 600 companies by product, parish or company name, said Richard Vlosky, director of the Louisiana Forest Products Development Center in the AgCenter.

Company locations are identified on a Louisiana map, and company contact information appears when a map icon is clicked.

Designed primarily to promote economic development in Louisiana’s forest sector, the website was initially developed by Vlosky and Fred Piazza, AgCenter chief information officer, and was funded by the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry and Louisiana Economic Development. The 2015 update was funded by Crosby Land & Resources LLC, of New Orleans.

“This is an example of how collaboration between the LSU AgCenter, state government agencies and industry can facilitate development of an innovative tool to power economic development,” Vlosky said.

“In addition to being a valuable business and promotional tool for the industry, the website information will identify spatial company clustering, which is a useful tool for economic development planners, as clusters tend to have efficiencies and scale economies that attract additional industry,” he added.

The forest sector is the largest segment of Louisiana agriculture with a nearly $3 billion contribution to the state’s economy in 2014. Forest products manufacturers employed nearly 13,000 people, while timber sales generated $12.7 million in severance taxes that year.

The website can be accessed at www.lsuagcenter.com/forestindustries.

Richard Vlosky can be reached at 225-578-4527 or rvlosky@agcenter.lsu.edu

Writer: Rick Bogren at 225-578-5839 or rbogren@agcenter.lsu.edu

Bioproducts Industry Growing in Louisiana

BATON ROUGE, La. – With several success stories to tell, Louisiana is poised to become a major player in the bioproducts industry, speakers said during a bioenergy conference held by the LSU AgCenter.

The conference was held in conjunction with National Bioenergy Day on October 21, 2015.

“There is a lot of focus right now on bioenergy globally, particularly in the wood sector. We want to ensure Louisiana producers are aware of what is happening in this industry,” said Rich Vlosky, conference coordinator and director of the LSU AgCenter Forest Products Development Center.

One successful bioproduct venture in the state is Myriant in Lake Providence, which uses sugars to develop bio-succinic acid. It opened its flagship facility in Lake Providence in December 2010.

Mark Shmorhun, vice president of engineering and general manager for the Lake Providence facility, said a lot of “great” things are happening right now.

“It’s been a slow process, but we’re seeing success with our product,” Shmorhun said. “Not all chemicals are created equal, and the succinic acid we’re creating is biobased; therefore, it is environmentally friendly.”

Succinic acid is used to make a broad range of products people use every day, as well as in pharmaceutical compounds.

Cool Planet Energy Systems in Alexandria is another Louisiana bioproduct success story. Mike Bukowski, vice president of operations for the Alexandria site, said his company’s focus is to “change the world for good.”

Reed Huckabay Forestry Scholarship Endowed

Reed Huckabay, BSF 1998A new forestry scholarship in honor of the late Reed Huckabay of Shreveport has been endowed to the Louisiana Forestry Foundation by friends, family and colleagues.

Huckabay was a forester for RoyOMartin, working in the Campti district for more than 15 years. He graduated from Louisiana State University with a forestry degree in 1998.

The 41-year-old forester died last April after a courageous battle with Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS).

Applications for the scholarship will be available to students majoring in forestry at either Louisiana State University or Louisiana Tech University through those departments on campus. The application period begins in spring 2016 for the following fall semester.

Huckabay was known for his passion for forestry and the outdoors. He grew up on a farm in Armistead developing a work ethic that served him well in his career. He formed many lasting relationships with those in the timber industry and became an expert on oil and gas exploration in the area.

“Reed’s work ethic and his dedication to RoyOMartin and his coworkers serve as an example for us all,” said RoyOMartin Woodlands Manager Mickey Rachal.

The Louisiana Forestry Foundation is dedicated to advance, promote, develop and extend education in the field of forestry.

The Foundation has awarded more than $740,000 in scholarships since it began in 1969.

Congratulations!

Dr. William E. Kelso (right) was awarded the 2015 Excellence in Education Award from the American Fisheries Society at the recent Annual Meeting in Portland, OR.

Faculty Participates in Formal Defense

Dr. Wu as thesis opponent

Dr. Qinglin Wu served as the opponent for a Ph.D. thesis defense in School of Energy Systems, Lappeenranta University of Technology, Lappeenranta, Finland for Ms Marina Nikolaeva (middle in the picture) on June 12, 2015. Ms Nikolaeva's major professor is Prof. Timo Karki (left in the picture). Her dissertation is on fire-retardant treated wood plastic composites. Very formal affair!!

Zambian Scientists Visit and Train with RNR Faculty

 Rockefeller RefugeIn July 2015, seven Zambian scientists representing the International Crane Foundation, Zambian Wildlife Authority, Bird Life Zambia, and the World Wildlife Fund, visited RNR for 12 days of intensive training in wetlands and waterbird ecology. Four of the seven scientists are lone ecologists on remote refuges in Zambia and work with a variety of wildlife including crocodiles, hippos, lions, antelope, and the wattled and black crowned crane.

Drs. Sammy King, Luke Labourde, and Andy Nyman provided several lectures to the group and led field trips to Grand Cote National Wildlife Refuge, Rockefeller Refuge, Lacassine Pool, the coastal prairie, and Pass a’ Loutre Wildlife Management Area. The Nature Conservancy led a field trip into the Atchafalaya Basin as well.

Zambian Scientists visit at the Mississisppi RiverThe scientists developed a greater understanding of wetland systems and also recognized the contrast between our highly modified wetland systems and their mostly pristine wetlands.They also visited with the Gulf Coast Joint Venture and developed a better understanding of broad-scale wetland monitoring. Dr. Brett Collier spoke to them about telemetry and its potential use in monitoring and research of large mammal populations. It was a great experience not only for the Zambians, but the RNR faculty learned a tremendous amount from our Zambian colleagues and were inspired by their passion for wetland and wildlife resources.

The group from Zambia was also highlighted in an article that appeared on the AvoyellesToday.com website. In Avoyelles, they were hosted by Dr. L.J. Mayeux of Marksville, parish coroner and expert on ducks and duck habitat. They were impressed by Mayeux’s collection of wood carvings and other duck-related items. The visitors also toured Grand Cote National Wildlife Refuge. The link to the complete write-up can be accessed here.

LFPDC is Providing Leadership for Forest Products Society

1. Dr. Niels de Hoop (right) served the past year as President of the Forest Products Society and is being presented a Gavel of Appreciation by FPS Executive Director Craig McKinney (left). 2. Dr. Rich Vlosky (right) is now the President-Elect of the Forest Products Society. He was presented a plaque by outgoing President Dr. Niels de Hoop (left) at the International Convention of the Forest Products Society.

All faculty members at the Louisiana Forest Products Development Center (LFPDC) are providing leadership for Forest Products Society.

The Forest Products Society is the premier organization through which scientists in wood products share their ideas and research results. It publishes the Forest Products Journal and many other journals and books that are circulated globally. This means that the LSU AgCenter is providing leadership in the dissemination and sharing of wood products research for the world.

Four faculty members serve in the Louisiana Forest Products Development Center (which is within the School of RNR) and were recognized at the International Convention of the Forest Products Society held June 10-12, 2015, in Atlanta: Drs. Rich Vlosky (Director), Qinglin Wu, Todd Shupe and Niels de Hoop. Dr. Vlosky is currently serving as President-Elect of the Forest Products Society. Dr. Wu is Faculty Advisor to the LSU Student Chapter. Dr. Shupe serves on the Board of Directors representing the 6-state south-central region. Dr. de Hoop now serves as Past President, having served during a time of major management transition. Through this leadership, the LSU AgCenter has emerged as one of the foremost organizations serving society in the responsible utilization and management of forest resources.

Congratulations on Award

Graduate student Barcley Pace won a student presentation award at the 36th Annual Meeting of the Louisiana Chapter of the American Fisheries Society meeting. Her presentation was on the “Infectivity pattern of white spot syndrome virus (WSSV) in the Louisiana red swamp crayfish (Procambarus clarkii).” Dr. Chris Green is Barcley's major professor.

College of Ag Alumni Awards Recognize Two in RNR

Ag Alumni Awards, Spring 2015

Anna Claire Ferchaud, left, received the K.C. Toups Memorial Les Voyageurs Award, and Mike Kaller, right, received the LSU College of Agriculture Alumni Association’s Early Career Outstanding Aumni Award. They are pictured with Allen Rutherford, head of the School of Renewable Natural Resources. Ferchaud is a senior in the school, and Kaller is an associate professor in the school. (Photo by Tobie Blanchard)

LSU College of Agriculture alumni group holds spring awards ceremony.
The LSU College of Agriculture Alumni Association recognized outstanding alumni, faculty and students at a ceremony on Friday, April 24, at The Club at Union Square on the LSU campus.

The event served as a spring gathering of alumni and friends of the LSU College of Agriculture, according to Luke Laborde, president of the association.

More details about the awards ceremonoy and all of the recipients are available from the LSU Agcenter Headline News page.

Congratulations to Anna Claire and Dr. Kaller!

Nanocellulose: A Green Building Block for Next-Generation Sustainable Material and Energy

The Winter 2015 issue of Louisiana Agriculture Magazine, published by the LSU AgCenter, includes articles on a wide range on topics. Dr. Qinglin Wu, Roy O. Martin Sr. Professor in Composites and Engineered Wood Products in the School of Renewable Natural Resources, contributed a feature article on the use of "nanocellulose" as a source for a variety of applications, such as high performance composites, electronics, biomedical materials and energy.

The article is now available online.

More Countries Turn to Louisiana for Forestry Needs

BATON ROUGE, La. – Louisiana is benefitting as countries around the world turn to the state to satisfy growing demand for wood products and forestry expertise, said Richard Vlosky, director of the LSU AgCenter Louisiana Forest Products Development Center.

Forestry has long been Louisiana’s No. 1 agricultural commodity, adding $2.9 billion to the economy in 2013, according to the AgCenter’s Ag Summary. Around the world, sustainable energy efforts have brought new attention to sustainable forest management and product development, Vlosky told attendees of the March 12 Global Agriculture Hour, an event sponsored by LSU AgCenter International Programs.

[...continued]

Distinguished Early Career Award

Dr. Chris GreenDr. Chris Green (right) was awarded the Distinguished Early Career Award at the annual meeting of the US Aquaculture Society.

The Distinguished Early Career Award recognizes an individual who has been involved in U.S. aquaculture for 10 years or less. This award recognizes outstanding leadership or innovation in research, education, extension, or industry development in the field of aquaculture. The award specifically emphasizes significant personal contributions made to further advance U.S. aquaculture.

Congratulations to Dr. Green!

Thanks and Farewell to Dr. Al Afton on Retirement

Dr. Sammy King (left), Leader of the USGS Coop Unit, presents Dr. Al Afton a plaque from the USGS in appreciation for the leadership, dedication and support he has provided to the Cooperative Research Unit during his 26 years as Assistant Leader Wildlife.

On Thursday, 30 Spetember 2014, the faculty and staff of the Louisiana Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, and the School of Renewable Natural Resources got together to celebrate the retirement of one of its own. Dr. Al Afton, Assistant Unit Learder (wildlife) is retiring after 26 years of outstanding federal service to the Coop Unit and to RNR.

The focus throughout Dr. Afton's career has been on relevant, applied management issues related to waterfowl ecology which has led to numerous accomplishments and has furthered a waterfowl legacy at LSU and the Cooperative Unit Program. He developed the North American Duck Symposium and a waterfowl listserve, both of which have greatly benefitted the waterfowl profession and state and federal land management agencies.

We will miss Dr. Afton, as he plans to escape the humid Southland and return to the frozen North for retirement. He plans to keep in touch and to follow the LSU sports on the SEC Network from a much cooler climate. Thanks again, to Dr. Afton...Congratulations on your retirement.

Photos of the get-together are on our Gallery page.

Dr. Stouffer on Sabbatical in Africa as Fulbright Scholar

Dr. Phil Stouffer (Professor, Conservation Biology) is on a year-long sabbatical as a Fulbright Scholar at the College of African Wildlife Management in Mweka, Tanzania.

To document his time there, he will post natural history-related photos to his Flickr account (https://www.flickr.com/photos/stoufferlsu/). He has promised that it will be more than birds! Check in from time to time to follow his adventures. Enjoy!

Students Get Taste of Natural Resource Management in RNR1001 Class

Dr. William Kelso, Professor in School of Renewable Natural Resourses, is the "professor of record" for this new program in the Agricultural Sciences. The course is Natural Resources Conservation, RNR1001, and it allows high school students to get a jump-start on their college careers in natural resources and agricultural sciences. The Associated Press(AP) story highlights the details and benefits to Lousiana students.

LIFT2 Grants Awarded to Three RNR Faculty

LSU has awarded 15 grants totaling $500,000 to faculty members through its new LIFT2 (Leveraging Innovation for Technology Transfer) grant program, which provides funding to validate the market potential of the faculty members' inventions. Grants are for up to $50,000. LSU President F. King Alexander says in a prepared statement that "this program will help to see many of these projects advance from basic research to market." Results of the research from the first grants are expected within a year. The grant awardees were selected from among 47 applications.

Congratulations are in order for three of our Faculty members receiving these prestigious awards:

Professors Todd Shupe and Richard Vlosky in the School of Renewable Natural Resources, along with Dr. Jim Richardson in the E. J. Ourso College of Business Administration on the LSU A&M campus received one of these these for their project titled: “Reclaiming Chromated Copper Arsenate (CCA) from Decommissioned Preservative-treated wood: Technology, Economics, and Markets

Assistant Professor Julie Anderson Lively in the School of Renewable Natural Resources, also received one of these awards. The title of her project is “Packaging and storage of a new blue crab bait

LFPDC Faculty Take Leadership Role in the Forest Products Society

All four faculty members in the Louisiana Forest Products Development Center (LFPDC), LSU AgCenter, have taken on leadership positions in the Forest Products Society (FPS).

In August, at the Society’s annual international convention in Quebec, Dr. Niels de Hoop, Associate Professor, will be installed as President and Dr. Richard Vlosky, LFPDC Director and Crosby Land & Resources Endowed Professor of Forest Sector Business Development, will be installed as Vice-President. Dr. Todd Shupe, Professor and Director of the LFPDC’s Wood Durability Laboratory will remain Regional Board Member for the South-Central Region for the next year. Dr. Qinglin Wu, Roy O. Martin Sr. Professor in BioComposites/Nanomaterials and Director of the Composites Engineering Laboratory, will become the Faculty Advisor for the newly created FPS Louisiana State University student chapter based in the School of Renewable Natural Resources.

In addition, at the Quebec convention, LFPDC faculty member Dr. Mark Gibson, Director, School of Forestry, Louisiana Tech University, will receive the prestigious Fred W. Gottschalk Memorial Award, named for the first President of the Society, which recognizes exceptional service to the Forest Products Society by an individual member. The Forest Products Society is an international not-for-profit technical association founded in 1947 to provide an information network for all segments of the forest products industry.

2 weeks, 100 plants: LSU Ag students take to woods for plant identification class

Don Reed and Ag Center ClassFRANKLINTON, La – [6 June 2014] With a tall walking stick in hand, Don Reed (center - on stairs), an LSU College of Agriculture professor and AgCenter forestry and wildlife specialist, wandered through Bogue Chitto State Park pointing out trees and plants to a group of students.

Each student had to correctly identify the common and scientific names of 20 plants. They called out names such as cherry laurel, St. Andrew’s cross and sweet leaf and more sinister-sounding ones like witch hazel and devil’s walking stick.

The group was spending two and half weeks in forests in southeast Louisiana as part of an intersession class through the LSU College of Agriculture.

Intersession classes are offered between semesters and last about two weeks. Cody Juneau, a senior in Renewable Natural Resources, said he learned a lot in a short period of time.

continued...

With Sadness...

Eric Paul "Pee Wee" FabreIt is with sadness we relay that one of our students, Eric Fabre, an NREM senior from Slidell, LA was killed in a tragic traffic accident. Many of you knew Eric from class, as a fellow student, and as a friend.

Condolences can be left on the Honaker Funeral Home web site.
Please keep Eric’s family in your thoughts. This is a tragic loss. -- Allen Rutherford

ERIC PAUL ‘PEE WEE’ FABRE, age 20 years, of Slidell, LA, passed away on Friday, June 20, 2014. Son of Milisa Hubbard (Sonny) and Jack Fabre (Michelle). Brother of Blake Fabre (Brittany) and Allie Hubbard. Step-brother of Megan Balladares and Raymond Balladares. Also survived by his fiancé, Taylor Tycer, his grandparents, and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins. A native of Slidell and a graduate of Northshore High School. He was a Senior at LSU where he was enrolled in the Wildlife and Fisheries Federal Program. He was an avid outdoorsman, who loved to hunt and fish. A friend of many and was loved by all who were touched by him. Relatives and friends of the family are invited to attend the Funeral Mass at St. Luke the Evangelist Catholic Church, 910 Cross Gates Blvd., Slidell, LA on Tuesday, June 24, 2014 at 6:00 P.M. Interment will be private. Visitation at the church on Tuesday after 4:00 P.M. until funeral time.

Students Awarded Louisiana Environmental Education Commission Grants

Songie HeKaci FisherRenewable Natural Resources Ph.D. students, Songjie He (left) and Kaci Fisher (right), have each been awarded a Louisiana Environmental Education Commission (LEEC) University Grant.

LEEC’s mission is to promote environmental education at all academic levels with the result of producing a literate citizenry who can make informed natural resource-related decisions.

Both are students in Dr. Jun Xu's Watershed Hydrology Lab. Songjie will use the grant funds to study historic nutrient inputs from coastal rivers in south Louisiana, and Kaci will be investigating heavy metal transport and retention in the Calcasieu and Atchafalaya River Basins. Congratulations to Songjie and Kaci!!

"Alligator: King of the Bayou"

"The American alligator is the largest reptile in North America and Louisiana has millions of them – from the coastal parishes to the Arkansas state line. They are so plentiful that they’re hunted for their meat and hides. But for a period of time, beginning in the early 1960s, Louisiana’s alligator population was in steep decline. Since then, Louisiana has instituted one of the world's most successful wildlife conservation projects to help ensure the alligator’s survival. Since 1985, some 300,000 gators have multiplied to nearly 3 million today." --LPB

As part of the LPB series "Alive in America's Delta", see our own Yu-Hsin Hsueh (Ph.D student of Dr. Chambers and Dr. Keim) as she talks about her own encounter with alligators while doing research in the swamp. This segment gives witness first-hand to how this keystone species – and cultural icon – was brought back to viability using a combination of biological science and marketplace economics.

The full program can now be accessed on LPB online.

Christina Hendricks Supports Sustainable Forestry

The Montréal Process Working Group was formed in 1994 as anintergovernmental response to the pressing need for sustainable forest management. Through the Montréal Process, member countries continue to make a voluntary commitment to work alongside each other to further the sustainable management of their forests and to create a pathway for collaboration and capacity building. For more information: www.montrealprocess.org

See the 60-second video sponsored by the USDA Forest Service.

A Note on Distracted Driving

The New England Journal of Medicine has posted a ahort video highlighting the results from a study on the dangers of Distracted Driving among Novice and Experienced Drivers. The video, only about 3 minutes long, is available here; the original article is available here. Please take the time to view the video, and peruse the article. The consequences of distracted driving can be serious to you, your passengers, and other drivers. As we begin the new year, a small reminder seems timely.

RNR Faculty Published in Techniques Book

RNR faculty extensively contributed and are featured in the newly published Wetland Techniques Volumes 2 and 3 by The Society of Wetland Scientists and Springer. Drs. Mike Kaller and Bill Kelso co-wrote the fish sampling chapter with Dr. Joel Trexler; Dr. Andy Nyman co-wrote the management of wetlands for wildlife chapter with a number of other researchers. The books are intended as general references and textbooks for undergraduate and graduate students interested in conservation, management, and restoration of wetlands and the plants and animals living in wetlands.

Former RNR Director Passes Away

With sadness, we announce that Dr. Stanley B. Carpenter passed away on Tuesday, 20 August 2013 in Baton Rouge, LA. Dr. Carpenter was the Director of the LSU School of Renewable Natural Resources for nine years, from July 1988 to September 1997.

A rememberance of Dr. Carpenter's life and his obituary are available online here.

Alive! In America's Delta - Whooping Cranes' Return

Whooping Cranes' Majestic Return - Trace the landmark effort to reintroduce the Whooping Crane into Louisiana's wetlands. 70 years ago these birds were on the brink of extinction. Today, there are more than 500, thanks in part to a breeding program underway at the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center in Maryland and dedicated partners in Louisiana, and here at LSU, working to return the birds to a region they have not seen since the 1950s. Experience Part 1 of LPB's thrilling new wildlife series: "Alive! In America's Delta." Program aired on LPB Monday, August 19, 2013, at 7:00pm.

If you missed the program, it is available for viewing online for a limited time. Check here for access.

RNR Hosts Fisheries Society Meeting

The School of Renewable Natural Resources hosted the 34th Annual Meeting of the Louisiana Chapter of the American Fisheries Society May 30-31st. Over 140 fisheries professionals from Louisiana, Texas, and Mississippi attended to hear a plenary session featuring the School’s own Dr. Allen Rutherford, learn from 21 scientific presentations (11 student presentations), view 16 posters, and participate in a Land Ethic workshop. Students in the School competed for awards, and Brett Miller won 1st place oral presentation and 2nd place abstract, Josh Patterson won 1st place poster, Paige O’Malley won 2nd place poster, Nikki Anderson won 2nd place oral presentation, and Calvin Fisher won 1st place abstract.

For a list of other students awarded honors at the various competitions, see our Student News page.

The Aquaculture and Fisheries Club (AFC) at LSU was active on and off campus during the 2012-2013 academic year. On campus, members and faculty advisors of AFC volunteered at Louisiana Sea Grant’s Ocean Commotion and at Louisiana Agricultural Center’s AgMagic to give school children a glimpse into fisheries and aquaculture. Off campus, members and faculty advisors helped clean up the estuaries of Southern Louisiana in the Louisiana Sea Grant Derelict Crab Trap Rodeo. The AFC looks to participate in these events again in the 2013-2014 calendar year and is looking to expand into other service learning events.

Why Do 'Single' Birds Dance?

Find out the answer to this intriging question, in a BBC article that features Dr. Vladimir Dinets, RNR Post-Doctoral Associate. Dr. Dinets has studied "dance" behavior in cranes as it relates to courtship and suprisingly, play. Dinets works with Dr. Sammy King and the USGS Louisiana Fish and Wildlife Cooperative Research Unit. A link to the artcle is here.

International Symposium Is Close To Home

ICCE 2014Dr. Jun Xu, an hydrology faculty with SRNR, is organizing an international symposium on erosion and sediment that will be held in New Orleans, December 2014. The meeting is a series of symposia organized under auspices of the International Commission on Continental Erosion (ICCE), which is one of ten commissions of the International Association of Hydrological Sciences (IAHS). The first symposium was held more than 30 years ago in Florence, Italy. Recent symposia were held in Moscow, Russia in 2004, Dundee, United Kingdom in 2006, Christchurch, New Zealand in 2008, Warsaw, Poland in 2010, and Chengdu, China in 2012. The symposium aims to provide an international forum for the dissemination and exchange of current art, science and technology on erosion, sediment transport, and interrelationships between them and the environment.

RNR Researcher Receives Funds for Water, Soil Contamination Study

BATON ROUGE, La. – An LSU AgCenter researcher has received two grants totaling $400,000 to study water and soil contamination in southwest Louisiana.

Yijun Xu is an environmental hydrologist in the AgCenter School of Renewable Natural Resources. He will study and analyze the effects on the environment from several chemicals and how to mitigate their effects on human health and remediate their environmental damage.

One study will focus on benzene, toluene, ethyl benzene and xylene; the other study will focus on hydrogen sulfide. The chemicals are byproducts that may come from oil refineries and associated oil processing, production, transportation and storage.

The studies are funded by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. The foundation is administering the grants as part of a court order that resulted from a plea agreement between the U.S. government and the Pelican Refining Company in Lake Charles.

Fisheries Techniques Features RNR Faculty Chapter

The new American Fisheries Society publication, Fisheries Techniques, 3rd Edition, features a chapter (Chapter 9) by the School’s Drs. Kelso, Kaller, and Rutherford. Fisheries Techniques is a widely used reference and textbook across the U.S. and internationally. Check it out at: http://afsbooks.org/55067C.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

2012 RNR Christmas tree

The RNR Christmas tree was awarded 2nd place in the "Tree" Division in the 2012 Staff Senate Christmas Decorating Contest. Many thanks to Cheryl Duplechain, and Rhonda Shepard for the beautiful job they did!

Ask an Expert

Ask An Expert!

Have you ever had a question about how nature works? Have you ever wondered about the structure or function of forestry, wildlife, or fisheries populations, but were unsure who to ask?

We have initiated a new service to direct your natural resources questions to our research or extension faculty in the School of Renewable Natural Resources. This Ask an Expert service is intended be a place to find answers to natural resources questions that you might not have been able to find using other resources.

Over time we will accumulate and make available answers to "frequently asked questions". We would challenge you to try and stump our experts!

To get started, either click the button above, or go to our Ask An Expert page and submit your question!

Ag Residence College Faculty Honored

Congratulations to the Agriculture Residence College Faculty for being recognized as an "Area/Community of the Quarter" by LSU’s Residence Life. Dr. Mike Kaller is the current SRNR faculty member of the group.

The Ag Residential College (ARC) is open to all first year students in the College of Agriculture. The residential college focuses on “Ag Leadership”, a recurring theme throughout the program designed for first-year Agriculture students. By taking several core courses together, students more quickly form relationships with classmates and professors both inside the classroom and out. The residence hall offers opportunities to travel and host several special interest lectures that focus on the diverse needs of today’s ever changing world. By living in a “mini-campus” atmosphere within the larger LSU campus, students achieve a greater sense of awareness, cultural competence, leadership, and community.

Louisiology: Now on the radio!!

Louisiology, a natural science radio program that focuses on local issues, is proud to announce that we are now on the air 3 times a week on 96.9 WHYR, Baton Rouge Community Radio. You can catch the show on Tuesdays at 6:30 am and 5:30 pm or on Sunday at 11 am.

This week (1 Nov 2012), Louisiology begins a 3-part series on swamp forests. In part 1, Atchafalaya Basinkeeper Dean Wilson describes how he uncovered illegal logging operations with helicopter surveillance. In part 2, RNR's own Jim Chambers describes the challenges facing our swamp forests, and in part 3, Julie Whitbeck describes her research on what makes a baldcypress restoration project successful.

Tune in! Like Us on Facebook! And listen to past episodes: http://www.mixcloud.com/CEGO/

Kudos to Faculty for Recent Recognitions!

Dr. Niels deHoopCongratulations to Dr. Niels de Hoop on being awarded the 2011 Excellence in Teamwork Award by the Joint Council of Extension Professionals for his work on the LSU AgCenter's AgMagic program. Good job Niels!

Dr. de Hoop has also been elected as Vice-President of the Forest Products Society in thier recent Board elections.




Dr. Todd ShupeDr. Todd Shupe has been elected to the Nominating Committee for the Forest Products Society. Additionally, Dr. Brian Via, former graduate student in RNR, has been elected as the Southeast Regional Board Representative.

Congratulations to All!

RNR Students and Faculty Honored by Gamma Sigma Delta

Som Bohora
Som Bohora, a Masters student in the SRNR under Drs. Richard Keim and Jim Chambers, received the Gamma Sigma Delta Outstanding M.S. Student Award for 2012 at their annual Spring Awards Banquet. Som’s M.S. thesis in Forestry is entitled “Spatial Variability In Response Of Deltaic Baldcypress Forests To Hydrology And Climate.” In addition, Som was listed on the Outstanding Graduate Student Merit Honor Roll.

Two undergraduate students were also honored by Gamma Sigma Delta. David Mahoney and Alexander Nadler were recognized with the Sophomore Scholarship Award of Merit.

Dr. Mike KallerOn the Faculty side, Congratulations are in order for Dr. Michael Kaller, RNR Assistant Professor-Research. He was awarded the Gamma Sigma Delta Teaching Certificate of Merit for his commitment to teaching. Dr. Kaller works with the Ag Residential College as well as teaching in the School of Renewable Natural Resources and serving as the School’s Undergraduate Coordinator. The Teaching Certificate of Merit was created to honor faculty who have made distinct contributions to agriculture through teaching. Congratulations to Dr. Kaller for a job well done!!

The LSU Chapter of Gamma Sigma Delta, the honor society of agriculture, recognizes high standards of scholarship in all branches of agricultural science and education. Congratulations to all!

Student Recognized in Poster Competition

DCulpepperForestry Master's student, Denton Culpepper, received a 2nd place award in the Delta Research Foundation 2012 Poster Competition. His poster was entitled Minimizing Epicormic Branch Formation On Louisiana’s Leading Commercial Bottomland Red Oaks. The competition was part of the 2012 Annual Southern Hardwood Forestry Research Group Meeting in February at Stoneville, MS. Denton is a student of Dr. Jim Chambers. Congratulations, Denton!

Fulbright Specialist Grant Awarded to Dr. Chang

image, Dr. Sun Joseph Change, ProfessorProfessor Sun Joseph Chang has been awarded a Fulbright Specialist grant to conduct a summer school program at Saint Petersburg State Forest Technical Academy in Saint Petersburg, Russia. The Fulbright Specialist Program promotes linkages between professors in the United States and their colleagues at over 100 host institutions. Project activities focus on strengthening and supporting the development needs of host institutions.

Dr. Chang’s program of study is designed for about 20 Ph.D. students from Russia and eastern European countries. Congratulations to Dr. Chang!!

Wildlife Techniques Class is "Hands-On" Training!

To better prepare School of Renewable Natural Resource students, Dr. Frank Rohwer has incorporated firearms training and a weekend hunting experience into the Wildlife Techniques class (RNR 4011). Delta Waterfowl Magazine recently featured the class activities in an article entitled, “Class In Session: College Wildlife Management Students Learn to Hunt Ducks.” The article (available here) shows how RNR faculty are working to better equip our graduates for natural resource careers.

Louisiana's Pearl River Fish Will Take Years To Rebound

Dr. Allen Rutherford, Director of the School of Renewable Natural Sources, is quoted on the long-term effects of the recent fish kill. The Huffington Post article is a reprint of that first published in The Louisiana Weekly in the Nov. 14, 2011 edition

revised: 07-Feb-2019 7:06