On September 26th, 2016, six Millersville University Environmental Biology students (Rachel Malampy, Kira Klaassen, Maggie Wallner, Zoe Zentner, Brendon Miller and Anthony Kessler) joined Dr. Aaron Haines for a day of Workshop training Sessions at Penn State Du Bois. This event was hosted by the Pennsylvania Chapter of the Wildlife Society with the purpose of offering professional development educational opportunities for natural resource biologists working in Pennsylvania, including State and Federal agencies, Private consulting groups and Academics.
Workshops were also open to students, of which, Millersville University students attended training workshops dealing with Mist-netting and Bird Banding, Non-lethal Methods in Wildlife Damage Control, Speed Training in Wetland Delineation, Raising and Tagging Monarch Butterflies, New Geospatial and Sensor Technologies for Quantifying Animal Behavior, Plant Identification for Biologists and an Introduction to Bat Sampling Technology.
This was the first time such an event has been hosted in the state. The goal is that future field day professional development opportunities will continue to become available to students. Funds for Millersville student travel to this event were provided by the Hummelstown Field and Stream Association.
The Pennsylvania Master Naturalist program is a statewide partnership initiative that aims to connect people with their local ecosystems through intensive natural science training and local conservation service work. It is designed to teach adult participants about the natural history and ecology of Pennsylvania’s diverse ecoregions.
As a service learning project, students from the Millersville Conservation Biology class helped set up a mammal workshop for the Pennsylvania Master Naturalist program. Students set out small mammal traps and remote cameras to survey mammal species at the Climber’s Run Nature Preserve. Below are some of the results from this effort.
Species photographed at the Climber’s Run Nature Preserve
Just finished teaching the Conservation Biology course at the Chincoteague Bay Field Station. A lot of cool site visits, field experiences, wildlife and active learning. Look below and see for yourself.
Below is video of footage from Remote Cameras set out at Wallops Island National Wildlife Refuge by the Millersville University Conservation Biology Class. Cameras were set out to document species diversity on the refuge.
The Millersville University Conservation Biology Class is currently conducting a rapid biological assessment for the United States Fish & Wildlife Service at Wallops Island National Wildlife Refuge. One of the field techniques we used was marking amphibians, mainly American and Fowler’s toads, with Visible Implant Elastomer (VIE) Tags. Below is a video we made while in the field showing this marking process. Marking these animals in the field will allow us to estimate their population size and density on the refuge.
Millersville Environmental Biology Students Halie Parker and Anthony Kessler are currently conducting internships with the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the Pennsylvania Game Commission. Both students are doing very well. Last week we were all involved in the elk calf capture. This is done to make sure the elk calves are of healthy weight and do not exhibit any signs of disease or parasites.
Halie Parker, Myself and Anthony Kessler at the Elk Calf Capture.
Click on the link below to see the results of the pheasant tracking efforts from the fall. This is an interactive map by student Jon Rutt showing the home ranges of the birds we tracked at Lancaster Central Park.
During the last month, the Millersville Mammalogy Class has been conducting remote camera surveys and spotlighting surveys for white-tailed deer and reporting the results to the Cross Gates Golf Course. Results suggest that there are deer in the area (a herd of 7 deer were spotted), but deer are not occurring at any high densities. Below are pictures of the different types of animals photographed during the remote camera survey effort. Species include groundhog, red fox, Northern raccoon, Virginia opossum, American mink, wood duck and Northern flicker .
Beginning to recapture individuals for the small mammal project. We are also finding that our new hair dye (blue dye mark below) for minimal invasive marking of small mammals is proving to be effective for field work.
On Saturday February 6th, Biology Students from Millersville University and William and Mary College met in Washington D.C. to discuss a joint research project on evaluating threats to endangered and threatened species. This meeting discussed the groundwork for reviewing listing documents of threatened and endangered species during the last 20 years to determine the major threats to wildlife throughout the United States. Students are currently putting together a database to answer these questions and to help improve recovery efforts for endangered species.
Millersville Students include Kelsi Nagy, Alex Sandercock, Delaney Costante, Hannah Brown, Amanda Dziedzic and Kayli Thomas.