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Category: Field Notes

A Rare Find

University of Arkansas biologist J.D. Willson and his graduate students wade into the marsh, its water sloshing against their shins. About 20 feet in, they bend down and check white plastic minnow traps, which look like two small laundry baskets attached to each other at the lid. But they aren’t looking for minnows. “I’ve got a snake,” said Phil Vogrinc, a master’s student, as he peers into the trap. His discovery catches the attention of Willson, an assistant professor of biological sciences leading the field work with Vogrinc and doctoral student Chelsea Kross on this warm spring morning at...

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Probing Pollinators in the Arkansas Delta

It is National Pollinator Week, which is a good time to share University of Arkansas pollinator field research going on this summer in the Arkansas Delta. Researchers including U of A graduate student Phillip Stephenson are covering an eight-county area known as the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley in east Arkansas to document and describe insect pollinator communities in wetlands and how they are contributing to the ecology of adjacent croplands. Many people associate bees and butterflies with pollination, but wasps, ants, moths, flies and some beetles all play a role in pollinating plants. Insect pollinators are essential to native...

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Field Notes: Taking Research On the Road

Students in Peter Ungar and Steven Beaupre’s summer course — Tanzania: Ecology, Evolution & Peoples of East Africa — scoured the ground for fossils at the Olduvai Gorge this week before heading to Gombe Stream National Park to study chimpanzees in the footsteps of Jane Goodall. The U of A reaches around the globe this summer as researchers take their classrooms and laboratories on the road in search of answers. Ungar, chair of the Department of Anthropology, and Beaupre, chair of the Department of Biological Sciences, combined forces to mix studies in ecology, evolution and anthropology in a four-week study abroad program. The...

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