Winter 2011


Bio Station logoDirector’s Message

As I write this message, I am enjoying the cool fall weather here on the shores of Lake Texoma. The trees are turning a vibrant kaleidoscope of colors, while the weather forecast is for a cold, clear night with possible heavy frost. It doesn’t get much better than this!

This past year has been another great year for UOBS with record research and grant activities (i.e. more than $3,000,000 in total grant monies, including three separate National Science Foundation– NSF– grants, and a continuing very large Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation – ODWC –funded project – see the golden algae article in this newsletter). In addition, we had a very active and productive summer session 2010. We offered eight courses –including bird ecology, field herpetology, field mammalogy, forensic entomology, molecular techniques, reservoir fish ecology, stream ecology, wetlands ecology – to more than 100 students. Also we continued to host different professional/educational groups, including a recent group of ~60 elementary, middle, and high school teachers from rural Oklahoma who toured the UOBS facilities under the guidance/direction of Gary Wellborn (UOBS faculty/outreach coordinator).

One of the highlights of this past year was a FUOBS/Department of Zoology jointly-funded reception in February 2010 for one of the College of Arts & Sciences (CAS) Distinguished Alumni, Dr. William C. McGrew (Cambridge University). Bill graduated from OU (’65) with a B.S. degree in Zoology, and went on for his D.Phil (Psychology – Oxford) and Ph.D. (Anthropology – Stirling) degrees. He has worked with renowned anthropologists and primatologists like Jane Goodall, and his decades-long studies of tool-use in non-human primates has resulted in a number of remarkable discoveries. Bill attributed his love of science to the early days when he was a high-school student from Norman, attending summer session classes at UOBS under the tutelage of Dr. Chuck Carpenter.

Other station news… Dr. R. Brian Langerhans, who was the UOBS-funded postdoctoral research fellow (since May 2008), took up a tenure-track Assistant Professor position at North Carolina State University in August. We wish Brian, his wife Aimee, and young son, August, best wishes as they settle in North Carolina! After a successful search for Brian’s replacement, I want to welcome Dr. Philip Morton (Ph.D. Purdue Univ.) and his family (wife Ashleigh and daughters Hazel and Violet) to the UOBS family. Philip and Ashleigh are native Okies. Philip started his UOBS postdoc in mid-October and will be collaborating with my lab group (see the article in this newsletter), as we examine population genetics/environmental genomics using the waterflea, Daphnia, as our model system.

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