2002 Canon National Parks Science Scholars named by U.S. National Park Service and AAAS

November 28, 2002

Ramona Maraj has plenty of "war stories" from her master's fieldwork on songbirds of Vancouver Island. There was the time a curious young black bear brushed against her and once, another bear took a night-time breather by sitting on her tent while she slept. Ironically, now that she is conducting research on grizzly bears in Canada's Yukon Territory, bear encounters have been rare. "You try not to harass the bears while you're studying them," she said.

Maraj is one of eight Ph.D. students who have received scholarships from the Canon National Parks Science Scholars Program for the Americas, allowing the doctoral students to conduct innovative research on scientific research on scientific problems critical to national parks. The scholarship program is a collaboration of Canon U.S.A., Inc., the National Park Service (NPS), and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Thanks to a commitment by Canon U.S.A., Inc., each of the 2002 awardees will receive $78,000.

This year, the program has become international in scope, including students and research in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Central and South America, and the Caribbean.

"AAAS, as an international, interdisciplinary science organization, is pleased to be a partner in the Canon National Parks Science Scholars Program for the Americas," said Alan I. Leshner, AAAS's chief executive officer. "It is important to incorporate science and technology into management and preservation of national parks throughout the Americas. Investing in the next generation of researchers makes good sense for the long-term health of parks."

The 2002 recipients are studying topics that include elk migration in Canada, invasive plants and pollinators in Patagonia, stream flow in Yosemite National Park, and community interaction strategies at the U.S. Virgin Islands National Park. Since the program began, students have conducted research in more than 45 national parks and shared more than 55 scientific articles and presentations. The eligible disciplines expanded this year to include technology innovation in support of conservation, in addition to the more conventional disciplines of biological sciences, physical sciences, and social/cultural sciences.

"Throughout the hemisphere, it's clear that we need science for effective park management, and parks are extraordinary places for research in many scientific disciplines," notes Gary Machlis, NPS visiting senior scientist and coordinator of the scholarship program. "Canon U.S.A., Inc. is to be congratulated for the legacy that is being built with their generous support."

The 2002 Canon National Parks Science Scholars Program for the Americas awardees are studying topics from fish to the trees in the north, south, east and west. One of the 2002 recipients, a Mexican scientist from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), will be studying endemic mammals in protected areas of Oaxaca in Mexico. Patricia Illoldi reports that the scholarship will allow her to spend eight months in the field confirming predictions made by a computer model. She said that her goal is to ensure that existing and proposed protected areas in Oaxaca include habitat for rare endemic mammals.

Marc Stern's project will consider issues regarding park management, as he conducts social science research to explore what leads to success or failure when park officials involve local people and organizations in decision-making processes in the United States and Ecuador.

Stern notes that in addition to the financial support, an important benefit of the program is the networking opportunities it provides both with other awardees throughout the Americas and with National Park Service leaders.

"It's great to be able to talk to other folks who are interested in the same things you are," he said.
Founded in 1848, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), http://www.aaas.org, has worked to advance science for human well-being through its projects, programs, and publications, in the areas of science policy, science education and international scientific cooperation. With over 134,000 members from 130 countries and 272 affiliated societies comprising more than 10 million individual members, AAAS is the world's largest federation of scientists. The association also publishes Science, an editorially independent, multidisciplinary, weekly peer-reviewed journal that ranks as the world's most prestigious scientific journals. AAAS administers EurekAlert! http://www.eurekalert.org, the online news service, featuring the latest discoveries in science and technology.

Additional Contact:
Carol Hoy, (202) 326-6414, choy@aaas.org

American Association for the Advancement of Science

Related Protected Areas Articles from Brightsurf:

Protected areas help waterbirds adapt to climate change
Climate change pushes species distribution areas northward. However, the expansion of species ranges is not self-evident due to e.g. habitat degradation and unsustainable harvesting caused by human activities.

Scientists reveal urgent solutions for boosting Protected Areas effectiveness
New research published today in Nature identifies the actions needed from governments, private entities, and conservation organisations to boost the effectiveness of Protected Areas and other area-based conservation efforts in protecting biodiversity and providing benefits to people.

More than 90% of protected areas are disconnected
Ongoing land clearing for agriculture, mining and urbanisation is isolating and disconnecting Earth's protected natural areas from each other, a new study shows.

Protected areas can 'double' imperilled species populations
A University of Queensland-led research team has revealed that many endangered mammal species are dependent on protected areas, and would likely vanish without them.

Are protected areas effective at maintaining large carnivore populations?
A recent study, led by the University of Helsinki, used a novel combination of statistical methods and an exceptional data set collected by hunters to assess the role of protected areas for carnivore conservation in Finland.

Protected areas worldwide at risk of invasive species
Protected areas across the globe are effectively keeping invasive animals at bay, but the large majority of them are at risk of invasions, finds a involving UCL and led by the Chinese Academy of Science, in a study published in Nature Communications.

Underprotected marine protected areas in a global biodiversity hotspot
Through the assessment of the 1,062 MPAs in the Mediterranean Sea, covering 6% of the Mediterranean Basin, a research team has shown that 95% of the total area protected lacks regulations to reduce human impacts on biodiversity.

Warming climate undoes decades of knowledge of marine protected areas
A new study highlights that tropical coral reef marine reserves can offer little defence in the face of climate change impacts.

Caribbean sharks in need of large marine protected areas
Governments must provide larger spatial protections in the Greater Caribbean for threatened, highly migratory species such as sharks, is the call from a diverse group of marine scientists including Stony Brook University School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences (SoMAS) PhD Candidate, Oliver Shipley.

Red coral effectively recovers in Mediterranean protected areas
Protection measures of the Marine Protected Areas have enable red coral colonies (Corallium rubrum) to recover partially in the Mediterranean Sea, reaching health levels similar to those of the 1980s in Catalonia and of the 1960s in the Ligurian Sea (Northwestern Italy).

Read More: Protected Areas News and Protected Areas Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.