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CASNR undergrad shines at student research poster division competition

CASNR undergrad shines at student research poster division competition

A senior animal science major walked away with top honors on Friday (April 20) at Texas Tech’s Undergraduate Student Research Conference, held at the university’s Student Union Building. Maggie Jones of Albuquerque won the “Exceptional 2012 Poster Presentation” category for her work focusing on urban birds admitted to the South Plains Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in Lubbock.

As the population grows, urban environments continue to expand into rural areas. Increased urbanization leads to a steady increase in human-wildlife interactions, and urban wildlife rehabilitation centers are often at the interface.

To improve the ability of the center to address public needs, and to better understand the impact on animals living in urban environments, officials need to understand the patterns of wildlife admissions to and treatment at the centers.

“We examined the admission records of birds to the South Plains center from 1989-2005, recording species, month of admission, reason for admission, and what happened to the animal,” Jones said. During the period, the center received over 150 species and 11,000 individuals of birds, with both numbers and species diversity increasing over time.

“This is indicative of a growing awareness of the existence of the center and of increased human-wildlife conflicts as Lubbock expands,” she said. Jones’ work was done in collaboration with Department of Natural Resources Management graduate student Kathleen McGaughey, and Gad Perry, an associate professor in Natural Resources Management.

Texas Tech’s Undergraduate Research Conference is an annual, campus-wide event to promote and support undergraduate researchers. The annual event is part of an ongoing mission to support and promote scholarly research and scholarship by providing undergraduate research opportunities for students and faculty at Texas Tech, program officials said.

While at the meeting students from Texas Tech and other universities had the opportunity to attend sessions geared towards undergraduate research, present research in a paper or poster presentations format, and network with fellow researchers.

The conference was hosted by Tech’s University Center for Undergraduate Research, Texas Tech University/Howard Hughes Medical Institute Program at the Center for the Integration of Science Education & Research, Office of the Vice President for Research and University Honors College.

Written by Norman Martin

CONTACT: Leslie Thompson, chairman and professor, Department of Animal and Food Sciences, Texas Tech University at (806) 742-2805 ext. 224 or leslie.thompson@ttu.edu

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