URBANA, Ill. – In January 2020, professor Jeffrey Brawn was named the inaugural Stuart L. and Nancy J. Levenick Chair in Sustainability, the first endowed chair in the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences (NRES) at the University of Illinois. A pandemic-belated ceremony happened yesterday on the Urbana campus.
URBANA, Ill. – Deep in an Indiana forest, a team of scientists skulked atop hillsides after dark. Carrying radios and antennas, they fanned out, positioning themselves on opposite ridges to wait and listen. Their quarry? Endangered Indiana bats and threatened northern long-eared bats.
URBANA, Ill. – Organic farmers often struggle to meet the nitrogen demands of corn and other crops. Unlike conventional farmers, with their easy access to inexpensive inorganic nitrogen fertilizers, fewer commercial options are available for organic growers.
URBANA, Ill. -- Researchers combed through thousands of historical documents for first-person accounts of fires occurring between 1673 and 1905 in the Midwestern tallgrass prairie. Their study is the first systematic analysis of the timing, causes and consequences of prairie fires in this part of the world. They report their findings in Natural Areas Journal.
URBANA, Ill. – Once aquatic invasive species establish, they typically refuse to budge. That’s why it’s critical to prevent invasive quagga mussels, Eurasian watermilfoil, and other bad actors from getting established in the first place.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — In a study of crayfish in the Current River in southeastern Missouri, researchers discovered – almost by chance – that the virile crayfish, Faxonius virilis, was interbreeding with a native crayfish, potentially altering the native’s genetics, life history and ecology. Reported in the journal Aquatic Invasions, the study highlights the difficulty of detecting some of the consequences of biological invasions, the researchers say.
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Urbana, Ill. – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has announced funding for a new project led by iSEE Interim Director Madhu Khanna, Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics, to optimize design for “agrivoltaic” systems – fields with both crops and solar panels – that will maintain crop production, produce renewable energy, and increase farm profitability.
URBANA, Ill – The world’s ecosystems quietly keep human beings alive, and we largely do not notice their impacts until they are gone. Take forests, for example, whose services are valued at $4.7 trillion each year. Trees capture and filter water running through the landscape, which maintains aquatic habitat and improves water supplies for drinking and recreation.
URBANA, Ill. -- Last week, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) finalized an agreement with the University of Minnesota and seven partner organizations — including the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign — to form a new Climate Adaptation Science Center (CASC). The center will advance scientific research and education in response to climate change impacts in the Midwest.
URBANA, Ill. – In many North American lakes, a tiny clawed creature has become a big bully. The invasive rusty crayfish roams lakebeds, snapping up snails, bivalves, and water plants, cutting off food supplies for native crayfish and other animals. And when they’re feeling saucy, some mount daring raids on fish eggs, reducing sport-fish populations.