Microsoft Summit 2011

Microsoft Research Faculty Summit 2011

Live Andes: Lista oficial de vertebrados terrestres existentes en Chile continental

La lista oficial de especies que utiliza el software Live Andes (Octubre 2011).

Para sugerencias, correcciones o agregar nombres comunes o especies escribanos a:



Dr. Cristián Bonacic & Catalina Zumaeta

Lista preparada por el equipo Fauna Australis

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Live Andes & Citizen Science

Live Andes



Live Andes 2012


Fauna Australis y el Laboratorio de Computación de la Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile se adjudicaron por segundo año consecutivo un proyecto Laccir. Mas detalles en: Laccir


Live Andes (Beta)

Plataforma virtual para compartir datos de la

distribución de especies en peligro de


Proyecto LACCIR (Microsoft)

Equipo de Investigadores:

Dr. Cristián Bonacic & Robert Petitpas (Fauna Australis)

Dr. Andrés Neyem (Depto de Ciencia de la Computación)

Dr. Marcelo Miranda (Depto de Ecosistemas y Medio Ambiente)

Dr. Gerardo Ceballos (México)

Dr. Luis Pacheco (Bolivia)

Dr. Rurik List (México)


Live-Andes es un programa desarrollado por el laboratorio Fauna Australis junto al Departamento de Computación de la Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile.



Para programas similares en el contexto de ciencia ciudadana:

Microsoft Summit 2011

Session: Computational Science Research in Latin America | videoSession Chair:Jaime Puente, Microsoft ResearchPresentations:

  • Live Andes (Advanced Network for the Distribution of Endangered Species): A New Tool for Wildlife—Cristian Bonacic, Catholic University of Chile | slides
  • The FAPESP-Microsoft Virtual Research Institute in São Paulo, Brazil—Carlos Henrique de Brito Cruz, FAPESP | slides
  • The Brazilian Biodiversity Database and Information System: SinBIOTA—Tiago Duque Estrada, UNICAMP | slides
  • LACCIR Federation: Building Research Capacity and Collaboration for ICT Innovation in Latin America and the Caribbean—Domingo Mery, Catholic University of Chile | slides

This session will provide a brief background about the organization and infrastructure of two virtual research institutes that Microsoft Research has established in Latin American and the Caribbean. One, in the State of São Paulo, Brazil, partnering with its research foundation (FAPESP), is called MSR-FAPESP Institute for ICT Research. The other is called LACCIR (Latin American and Caribbean Collaborative ICT Research Federation) and covers the entire region in partnership with top-tier research universities, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), and the Organization of American States (OAS). The goal of these two virtual research institutes is to foster ICT research capacity building by exploring the application of computer science to fundamental research challenges in education, healthcare, energy, and the various disciplines  that are associated with environmental sciences. During this session, projects conducted by the MSR-FAPESP and LACCIR will be discussed as examples of research from this emerging region.


Citizen Science

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Featured Project epidemic, infectious disease, virus PiggyDemic

  • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Gal Almogy and Nir Ben-Tal, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Department
  • DATES: Ongoing

What is Citizen Science?

Research often involves teams of scientists collaborating across continents. Now, using the power of the Internet, non-specialists are participating, too. Citizen Science falls into many categories. A pioneering project was SETI@Home, which has harnessed the idle computing time of millions of participants in the search for extraterrestrial life. Citizen scientists also act as volunteer classifiers of heavenly objects, such as in Galaxy Zoo. They make observations of the natural world, as in The Great Sunflower Project. And they even solve puzzles to design proteins, such as FoldIt. We’ll add projects regularly—and please tell us about others you like as well.


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  • epidemic, infectious disease, virus Health



    Researchers at Tel Aviv University have developed a Facebook application called PiggyDemic that allows users to “infect” their friends with a simulated virus or become infected themselves. The resulting patterns will allow researchers to gather information on how a virus mutates, spreads through human interaction, and the number of people it infects.

    Scientists use mathematical algorithms to determine which virus will spread and how, but this method has some flaws. It assumes that a virus has equal distribution across populations, but that is simply not the case, the researchers say. Patterns of social interaction must also be taken into account.

    Once added to a user’s Facebook account, PiggyDemic follows the user’s newsfeed to determine the people they interact with. Users are deemed “susceptible,” “immune” or “infected” with various simulated viruses, and can pass them on to their online contacts. Researchers then follow these interactions using network visualization software, and watch the links between users as the “viruses” are passed on.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Gal Almogy and Nir Ben-Tal, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Department
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • jellyfish,citizen science More Science



    Have you seen a jellyfish, red tide, a squid, or other unusual marine life recently? If so, tell us about it! JellyWatch marine biologists need help from citizen scientists to develop a better understanding of the ocean. If you’ve been on the beach or in the ocean lately, you can contribute to a long-term dataset by telling us about the animals you saw or the conditions of the beach. You can help us even more by submitting a picture of what you saw.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Steve Haddock, Lead Researcher
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • Deepwater,oil Energy & Sustainability

    Gulf Oil Spill Tracker


    Nonprofit SkyTruth, in conjunction with the Surfrider Foundation and Ocean Conservancy, Gulf Oil Spill Tracker in early May 2010 as a way to give people a way to participate in tracking the impacts of the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster and its aftermath.

    Citizen scientists submit their observations online. When out in the field, they can take with them an information card reminding them of the information they need to include in their report: contact information, incident information and description, GPS location, etcetera.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Paul Woods, Chief Technology Officer
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • conservation, oil Energy & Sustainability

    Volunteer Field Observer Program


    In May 2010, Alabama Coastal Foundation and Mobile Baykeeper worked with Coalition of Active Stakeholders Team (COAST) partners to develop and implement the Volunteer Field Observer (VFOB) Program in response to last year’s Deepwater Horizon oil release. The program’s goal is to train volunteers to serve as citizen scientists, documenting shoreline conditions along Alabama’s shoreline using GPS coordinates and alerting officials and COAST partners to the presence of oil and/or affected wildlife.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Bethany Kraft, Executive Director
    • DATES: Ongoing
    • LOCATION: Alabama
  • rain, precipitation,citizen science,gauge More Science

  is a cooperative rainfall monitoring network for Arizona developed at The University of Arizona by SAHRA (Sustainability of semi-Arid Hydrology and Riparian Areas) and the school’s cooperative extension. Data collected through this network will be used for a variety of applications, including watershed management activities and drought planning at local, county and state levels.

    Official rain gauges in Arizona are few and far between. The large gaps in coverage are a particular problem where precipitation amounts are highly variable due to topography and seasonal weather patterns. This is especially true during the monsoon season, when thunderstorms can produce heavy rainfall that is very localized.

    All data posted by volunteers is available in real-time in maps useful in tracking high-resolution variability in precipitation patterns and potential changes in drought status. As more people participate and more information is gathered, the resolution of the maps will improve.

    Citizen scientists are asked to track daily or monthly precipitation amounts. Daily observations should ideally be recorded as close to 7 a.m. as possible. Each daily observation will cover the previous 24 hours and represent the previous calendar day. This is consistent with the National Weather Service Cooperative Observer Program monitoring protocol.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Gary Woodward, Associate Director, Hydrology and Water Resources
    • DATES: Ongoing
    • LOCATION: Arizona
  • More Science

    Encyclopedia of Life


    In 2007, the Field Museum of Natural History, Harvard University, Marine Biological Laboratory, Smithsonian Institution and Biodiversity Heritage Library joined together to initiate the Encyclopedia of Life, an ongoing collaboration among its cornerstone institutions and international partners, with the common goal to gather and share knowledge about all forms of life. The Encyclopedia of Life is a global effort to document all 1.9 million named species of animals, plants and other forms of life on Earth and make that information freely accessible.

    EOL welcomes image and video contributions from the public. The easiest way to get images up on EOL is through our Encyclopedia of Life Images group at the photo-sharing site Flickr. You can also share short video clips (up to 90 seconds) through EOL’s Flickr group. For longer videos, EOL has an Encyclopedia of Life Videos group on Vimeo. You can also share organism images through Wikimedia Commons.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Erick Mata, Executive Director
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • garlic mustard, invasive species More Science

    Global Garlic Mustard Field Survey


    Many invasive species, like Garlic Mustard (Alliaria petiolata), are threatening the world’s natural resources. The abundance of Garlic Mustard is variable throughout North America and Europe, even for populations that have been established for a long time. Understanding why this variation exists could lead to important new insights into the biology of invasive species and ultimately lead to new and more effective control options

    Maybe you wonder if your time would be better spent pulling out Garlic Mustard, rather than measuring it. Control efforts are important, but good scientific research will lead to much more effective control strategies.
    The researchers behind the Global Garlic Mustard Field Survey project are integrating survey data with Garlic Mustard eradication efforts to track the effectiveness of different control options in different regions

    Through large-scale sampling, scientists can identify areas that differ in the intensity of invasion and try to understand why these differences exist. They can also compare this to variation in the native range. This may be crucial to researching new methods of control, but a large project like this could cost millions of dollars and years of work without help from volunteers.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Robert Colautti, Postdoctoral Scholar (North America)
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • redwood, forest Energy & Sustainability

    Redwood Watch


    Redwood Watch is a citizen science project created by Save the Redwoods League scientists to help learn in what climates redwoods can survive and track the redwood forests’ migration over time. Redwoods can grow taller than 100 meters and have been known to live for more than 2,000 years.

    Redwood forests once grew in North America and beyond but their territory, which has shrunk due to changing landscapes and climates over millions of years, today stands at about 1.9 million acres along the coast of Northern California. Researchers believe that climate change will continue to impact the survival of these trees and are seeking help to map the areas where redwoods are currently thriving.

    Redwood tree observations can be made anywhere redwood trees are found and recorded using the Redwood Watch iPhone application. By submitting observations citizen scientists will help their professional colleagues track the migration of redwood forests over time and learn what climate redwood trees can survive.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Ruskin Hartley, Executive Director and Secretary
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • More Science

    Project Noah


    Project Noah was launched out of New York University’s Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) in early 2010. “NOAH” is actually an acronym that stands for Networked Organisms And Habitats. The project started off as an experiment to see if the researchers—including founding members Yasser Ansari, Martin Ceperley, Peter Horvath and Bruno Kruse—could build a fun, location-based mobile application to encourage people to reconnect with nature and document local wildlife.

    Project Noah, which launched its iPhone app in February of 2010 and has since added an Android app, has the ultimate goal of building an online platform that can be used by citizen scientists to document a wide variety of wildlife—spiders, birds, moose, you name it.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Yasser Ansari
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • squirrel More Science

    Project Squirrel


    Project Squirrel was originally created by Wendy Jackson and Joel Brown, and has been operating since 1997. During this time, more than 1,000 people have participated, provided observations, and filled out the project’s survey. Participants have been able to learn a great deal about these squirrels, at first in the Chicago Metropolitan Region and now throughout the U.S.

    Squirrels are worth studying because they are active during the day and everyone has an opinion about them. Additionally, squirrels can be important indicators of local ecology because they are resident in small territories and active year round, they require a range of resources that are also important to many other urban animals, and their populations rise and fall with the same predators and environmental conditions that affect our neighborhood wildlife.

    No matter where you live, if there are squirrels in your neighborhood, you are encouraged to join Project Squirrel and become a squirrel monitor. Fox squirrels and grey squirrels are two of the most familiar species of wildlife in many neighborhoods and natural areas. To gain this insight, we must gather data about as many individual squirrels in as many places as possible.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Steve Sullivan, Director
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • More Science

    FrogWatch USA


    FrogWatch USA is the Association of Zoos & Aquariums’ (AZA) flagship citizen science program that allows individuals and families to learn about the wetlands in their communities and help conserve amphibians by reporting the calls of local frogs and toads. Frogs and toads have been vitally important in the field of human medicine and compounds from their skin are currently being tested for anti-cancer and anti-HIV properties. Frogs and toads also play an important role, serving as both prey and predator, in wetland ecosystems and are considered indicators of environmental health.

    Many previously abundant frog and toad populations have experienced dramatic population declines both in the United States and around the world and it’s essential that scientists understand the scope, geographic scale, and cause of these declines.

    FrogWatch USA volunteers learn to identify local frog and toad species by their calls during the breeding season and how to report their findings accurately. By mastering these skills, volunteers gain increased experience and control over asking and answering scientific questions which, in turn, augments science literacy, facilitates conservation action and stewardship, and increases knowledge of amphibians.

    For a related citizen science project, see‘s Global Amphibian Blitz
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Paul Boyle, Senior Vice President for Conservation and Education
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • More Science

    Shark Observation Network


    The Shark Observation Network is a partnership of the Greenland Shark and Elasmobranch Education and Research Group (GEERG), the Shark Research Institute (SRI Canada) and the BIOAPP. The network supports the collection and organization of data as well as the development and dissemination of information concerning the state of shark and elasmobranch populations and their worldwide distribution. The information serves to support environmental awareness, assessment and policy making, and public participation at a global level. Citizen scientists can help by reporting their own shark observations on a regular basis.

    The broadnose sevengill shark, Notorynchus cepedianus, is the only extant member of the genus Notorynchus, in the family  Hexanchidae. It is recognizable because of its seven gill slits, while most shark species have five gill slits, with the exception of the members of the order Hexanchiformes. The shark is gray or brownish with spots, and its top jaw has jagged cusped teeth and the bottom comb shaped. This adaptation allows the shark to eat sharks, rays, fish, seals, and carrion. The sharks live in temperate areas up to 135 meters deep and have attacked humans only while in captivity. This shark is ovoviviparous, bearing live young. It grows up to three meters long.

    Project organizer Michael Bear is the Science Diving columnist for California Diver Magazine and an AAUS (American Academy of Underwater Sciences) Science Diver with 1000 cold-water dives in California. Bear says that sevengill sharks did not start appearing in the San Diego area until 2008, but that the population has since grown steadily. The Shark Observation Network is looking for citizen scientists and experienced divers to help them study sevengill sharks by contributing data, videos and photos to an online database.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Vallorie Hodges, Diving Safety Officer
    • DATES: Ongoing
    • LOCATION: California – San Diego area
  • ant Evolution

    School of Ants


    North Carolina State University​’s School of Ants project is a citizen-scientist driven study of the ants that live in urban areas, particularly around homes and schools. Collection kits are available to anyone interested in participating—teachers, students, parents, kids, junior-scientists, senior citizens and enthusiasts of all stripes are involved in collecting ants in schoolyards and backyards using a standardized protocol so that NCSU researchers can make detailed maps of the wildlife that lives just outside our doorsteps. The maps created with these data are telling the researchers quite a lot about native and introduced ants in cities, not just in North Carolina, but across the United States and, as this project grows, about the ants of the world.

    Starting this fall, citizen scientists will be able to view their sampling location on an interactive map with a species list generated from your collected samples. In the meantime, NCSU researchers are sorting and identifying the ants in all of these samples.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Andrea Lucky, Postdoctoral Researcher
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • More Science



    NestWatch is a nest-monitoring project developed by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology in collaboration with the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center, and funded by the National Science Foundation​. Global environmental monitoring must include monitoring of biological organisms if we wish to understand the causes of and solutions for species declines. As a result, the need for large, continent-wide databases tracking survival and reproductive success of a wide range of species is increasing.

    NestWatch teaches people about bird breeding biology and engages them in collecting and submitting nest records. Such records include information about nest site location, habitat, species, and number of eggs, young, and fledglings. Citizen scientists submit their nest records to our online database where their observations are compiled with those of other participants in a continentwide effort to better understand and manage the impacts of environmental change on bird populations.

    Once fully populated, the database will house nearly 400,000 stored nest records spanning more than 40 years and 500 species.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Jason Martin, Project Leader
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • More Science

    New Jersey Shorebird Survey


    New Jersey Audubon (NJA) is recruiting volunteers for shorebird surveys. Participants must have some prior experience in shorebird identification and be willing to commit three days a month in August, September and October to conducting bird surveys.

    These ongoing shorebird surveys, initiated in 2004, have provided current information on migration stopover sites along New Jersey’s Atlantic coast for Red Knots, American Oystercatchers and other shorebirds. These data are raising awareness among state and federal agencies in New Jersey about the cumulative importance of many smaller stopovers and the growing impact from human disturbance. Citizen Science surveys are having a significant positive effect on the conservation of migrant shorebird habitats in New Jersey.

    Shorebird citizen scientists are needed for the New Jersey Meadowlands and coastal sites, especially ones in Cape May and Atlantic Counties. Shorebird volunteers are required to survey their site every 10 days (and at least 5 days apart) during southbound (fall) migration: July 15th to October 31st. Training in identification and count methodology will be provided by NJ Audubon during two workshops in late July, one in the NJ Meadowlands (tentatively scheduled for July 23rd) and one in South Jersey (tentatively the week of July 18).

    This project is a collaborative effort of New Jersey Audubon Society (NJAS), New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife/Endangered and Nongame Species Program, and Manomet Center for Conservation Science, aimed at assessing status and changes in populations of shorebirds to better manage and conserve stopover areas. The data collected by volunteers will be incorporated into the national database of the Program for Regional and International Shorebird Monitoring (PRISM), whose overall goal is to monitor trends in shorebird populations. In addition, the information will help identify areas important to southbound shorebirds, and define shorebird management goals for New Jersey.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Nellie Tsipoura, Senior Research Scientist and Citizen Science Director
    • DATES: Friday, July 15, 2011 – Monday, October 31, 2011
    • LOCATION: New Jersey
  • More Science

    Firefly Watch


    Researchers at Boston’s Museum of Science have teamed up with Tufts University and Fitchburg State College to track the fate of fireflies across the U.S. via Firefly Watch. With help from citizen scientists, the researchers hope to learn about the geographic distribution of fireflies and their activity during the summer season.

    Fireflies (which are actually a type of beetle) may be affected by human-made light, lawn care (they tend to sleep in the grass during the day) and pesticides. The researchers seek to discover to what degree these and other factors are diminishing firefly populations.

    Citizen scientists will learn to identify firefly flash colors, patterns and locations and record this information online for communal use.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Don Salvatore, Project Coordinator
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • More Science

    Community Collaborative Rain, Hail & Snow Network (CoCoRaHS)


    The Community Collaborative Rain, Hail & Snow Network (CoCoRaHS) is a non-profit, community-based network of volunteers of all ages and backgrounds working together to measure and map precipitation (rain, hail and snow). By using low-cost measurement tools, stressing training and education, and utilizing an interactive Web site, the network’s aim is to provide quality data for natural resource, education and research applications.

    Volunteers post their daily observations on the CoCoRaHS Web site. Observations are immediately available on maps and reports for the public to view. By providing high quality, accurate measurements, the observers are able to supplement existing networks and provide useful results to scientists, resource managers, decision makers and other users.

    CoCoRaHS came about as a result of a flash flood that hit Fort Collins, Colo., in July 1997. A very localized storm dumped more than a foot of rain in several hours while other portions of the city had only modest rainfall. The ensuing flood caught many by surprise and caused $200 million in damages. CoCoRaHS was born in 1998 with the intent of doing a better job of mapping and reporting intense storms.

    As more volunteers participated, rain, hail, and snow maps were produced for every storm showing fascinating local patterns that were of great interest to scientists and the public. By 2010 CoCoRaHS became a nationwide volunteer network.

    The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the National Science Foundation (NSF) are major sponsors of CoCoRaHS.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Nolan Doesken, Climatologist and Senior Research Associate
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • butterfly,monarch,citizen science More Science

    Project MonarchHealth


    Project MonarchHealth is a citizen-science survey of the occurrence of the protozoan parasite Ophryocystis elektroscirrha  (OE), which parasitizes monarch butterflies. Best known for their migrations between breeding and wintering sites throughout North America, these butterflies are also found in non-migratory populations in places such as southern Florida. This parasite is not harmful to humans; however, it can harm the butterflies by inhibiting normal growth and lowering butterfly survival in the wild.

    To check for parasites, surveyors can swab the abdomen of live butterflies to collect parasite spores. MonarchHealth participants help scientists map the location and infection levels of OE in monarchs throughout the United States and determine how much disease the parasites cause.

    The most essential activity is capturing and sampling wild monarchs. Either capture monarch butterflies as adults or raise the caterpillars in separate containers until they become adult butterflies. In either case, you will gently tape each butterfly’s abdomen with a sticker to collect the OE spores. Next, you will send the sample, along with a simple data sheet for each butterfly, back to the scientists at the Altizer lab where they will analyze the sample. After the data are compiled, we will send you the results of your sampling contribution as well as post them on our results page for the public to see.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Sonia Altizer, Associate Professor
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • mongolia, archeology, satellite More Science

    The Valley of the Khans


    Citizen scientists examine thousands of satellite images of Mongolia to identify sites and features of potential archaeological interest; the idea is that this will assist archaeologists currently working on the ground. Researchers can study in real time the most promising citizen-scientist tagged objects (roads, rivers, structures, etcetera) using 3-D virtual reality, ground-penetrating radar and unmanned aerial vehicles. The goal of the Valley of the Khans archeological project is to identify archeological sites without disturbing them.

    With the growing trend of rogue illegal mining in the region, such protective measures will be critical in the preservation of this iconic symbol of world cultural heritage and the rich cultural patrimony throughout Mongolia.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Albert Yu-Min Lin, Research Scientist
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • bird More Science

    The WildLab


    There are about 9,000 species of birds in the world, which, in spite of being a very diverse group of animals, all share certain traits. Beaks, wings, flight, eggs, hollow bones and, especially, feathers are all adaptations that help birds survive. Citizen scientists participating in The WildLab will search for birds in their local areas, view these birds through binoculars and, using an iPhone app, record observations about its shape, size, color, pattern and behavior.

    The WildLab iPhone app enables citizen scientists to select which bird they are observing. If the citizen scientists are in doubt, they can select from a number of bird silhouettes and colors and even listen to bird songs to be sure they identify the correct bird. Once they are sure of their identification, they count the number of that species seen and enter the sighting in the WildLab database. The phones use GPS to log sightings with accuracy to within a few meters. These observations can be viewed online and submitted to databases such as Cornell’s eBird Database, and then used by scientists to track bird numbers and distribution.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Jared Lamenzo, Director, The WildLab
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • Washington, water, public health Health



    SoundCitizen was started in 2008 by a group of undergraduates from the University of Washington in Seattle. The students wondered whether it was possible to detect human-originated compounds in the water systems, and decided to find out by testing for cooking spices in local waters. The project has since grown and its scope has been broadened. The focus is still on scientific investigation and knowledge discovery of the chemical links between urban settings and aquatic systems. However, in addition to studying compounds like cooking spices, they also study more serious ones, pollutants in particular.

    SoundCitizen is still staffed by undergraduate students at the University of Washington, whose individual research topics help define the overall scientific aims of the program. SoundCitizen encourages involvement with citizen volunteers and school groups, who voluntarily collect water samples from aquatic systems, perform a series of basic chemical tests, and then mail samples to the lab to be further analyzed for cooking spices and emerging pollutants.

    Since the program’s inception in November 2008, more than 300 volunteers and 500 K-12 students have participated in the program. More than 1,000 kits have been distributed, and more than 95 percent of the returned samples have passed initial quality control screening and have been fully processed for emerging pollutants and cooking spices.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Rick Keil, Associate Professor
    • DATES: Ongoing
    • LOCATION: Washington – Puget Sound region
  • entomology,ladybug More Science

    Lost Ladybug Project


    Throughout North America ladybug species distribution is changing. Over the past 20 years several native ladybugs once very common have become extremely rare. During this same time ladybugs from other places have greatly increased both their numbers and range. Some ladybugs are simply found in new places. This is happening very quickly and scientists don’t know how, why or what impact it will have on ladybug diversity or the role that ladybugs play in keeping plant-feeding insect populations low.

    Lost Ladybug Project is asking citizen scientists to help discover where all the ladybugs have gone so they can try to prevent more native species from becoming so rare. For example, to be able to help the nine-spotted ladybug and other ladybug species, scientists need detailed information on which species are still out there and how many individuals are around. Entomologists at Cornell can identify the different species but there are too few of these scientists to sample in enough places to find the really rare ones.

    Cornell entomologists need citizen scientists to be their legs, hands and eyes by finding and photographing local ladybugs.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: John Losey, Associate Professor
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • star, auriga Space

    Citizen Sky


    Since the early 19th century, astronomers have observed this extremely long-period eclipsing binary located in the  constellation Auriga, the charioteer. In 1928, astronomer   Harlow Shapley correctly concluded that the two stars were about equal in mass. Based on this information they should be about equal in brightness as well. But the spectrum of the system showed no light from the companion at all. The visibly bright first star (called the primary) was being eclipsed by a massive, invisible second star (called the secondary).

    Epsilon Aurigae​ is bright enough to be seen with the unaided eye even in the most light-polluted cities, and it is visible every fall, winter and spring. The change in brightness that this star undergoes is called an eclipse (a process of fading and coming back to its usual brightness).
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Arne Henden, Project Principal Investigator
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • bee, pollination, flower More Science

    The Great Sunflower Project


    Researchers at San Francisco State University set up The Great Sunflower Project in 2008 to better understand the reason for and impact of declines in bee populations. The idea behind the project is to plant flowers, observe how many and how often bees visit those flowers, and then enter that information into a database on The Great Sunflower Project Web site. The project has since expanded so that citizen scientists can also plant Bee balm, Cosmos, Rosemary, Tickseed, and Purple coneflower for the purposes of this research.

    Some bee populations have had severe declines, and this may be affecting food production. There have been few efforts to measure how much pollination is happening over any given region so it is unclear how these declines in bees influence gardens. As the researchers point out, many plants can’t set fruit until they have been visited by a bee. The Great Sunflower project uses observational bee data collected by citizen scientists to create a nationwide (and hopefully worldwide) online map of bee populations.

    The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Entomology Department has created a citizen science project to likewise study declining bee populations called BeeSpotter, although this project is limited for the time being to the state of Illinois.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Gretchen LeBuhn, Associate Professor
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • NASA,comet,space Space



    On January 15, 2006, the sample return capsule from NASA’s Stardust spacecraft parachuted onto the Utah desert. In addition to the particles collected during Stardust’s encounter with comet Wild 2 in January of 2004 the spacecraft delivered tiny particles of interstellar dust that originated in distant stars, light-years away. Scientists estimate that Stardust collected 45 of these micron-sized interstellar dust particles using an aerogel collector 1,000 square centimeters in size.

    Finding the individual dust particles, however, has been a challenge—made worse by the condition of the collector plates, which are interspersed with flaws, cracks and an uneven surface.

    Through its Stardust@home citizen science project, University of California, Berkeley​, researchers have invited Internet users to help them search for these few dozen submicroscopic grains of interstellar dust captured by NASA’s Stardust spacecraft. The researchers took scans of the plates from a cleanroom at Houston’s Johnson Space Center and made images of these scans available for public viewing via the Web. The dust grains will have made carrot-shaped trails in the aerogel, which is a silicon-based sponge 100 times lighter than water.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Bryan Mendez, Space Science Education and Public Outreach Specialist
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • amphibian,conservation,climate change More Science Global Amphibian Blitz


    For a variety of reasons (including disease, loss of habitat and pollution) the world’s frogs and other amphibians are rapidly disappearing. Recent estimates suggest that nearly one-third of the world’s amphibian population is facing extinction and that 168 species have already gone extinct in the last two decades.

    Coordinators of Global Amphibian Blitz are calling on citizen scientists to help arrest this problem by taking stock of amphibian populations worldwide. This includes observing, photographing and recording information about local amphibians. Images can be posted to the Global Amphibian Blitz Web site and amphibian locations are plotted on a world map. In the project’s first week alone, researchers say they were able to locate 303 distinct species worldwide—4.4 percent of the 6,815 amphibian species on this planet.

    In order to protect rare species when they are identified, obscures specific locations to protect the amphibians from those who might harm them. Public coordinates describing the locations of species whose names appear on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources “Red List”—at high risk for global extinction—are obscured by about 5 kilometers. The reporting citizen scientist, however, does see the exact coordinates of his or hear observation.
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    • DATES: Ongoing
  • bee, entomology More Science



    Concern about pollinator declines has increased in recent years, and, where pollinator status has been monitored over time, scientists are seeing some dramatic reductions in numbers. For most pollinators, however, there are simply no baseline data available to allow for an evaluation of changes in abundance. Beespotter is a Web-based partnership between the professional science community and citizen scientists—starting in Illinois exclusively but with the goal of spreading nationwide—to meet a critical need for data collection and to provide opportunities for the public to learn more about these ecologically essential organisms.

    Species in the family  Apidae—honey bees and bumble bees—are ideal subjects for citizen-scientist contributions to experimentation and data collection. Because of their striking coloration and readily recognizable shape and behavior, as well as their relatively large size (at least as far as insects are concerned), honey bees and bumble bees are far more easily “spotted,” photographed, and identified based on color pattern than most of the other 3,500+ species of bees in North America.

    There is currently no systematic nationwide effort to document pollinator status in North America beyond the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service(NASS) annual survey of honey bees used for honey production. The goals of Beespotter are to engage citizen scientists in data collection to establish a baseline for monitoring population declines, to increase public awareness of pollinator diversity, and enhance public appreciation of pollination as an ecosystem service. The use of photography for identification, instead of the net, pin, and spreading board of traditional entomology, is consistent with the goal of preserving bee diversity and enhancing pollinator appreciation.
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    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: May Berenbaum, Professor and Department Head
    • DATES: Ongoing
    • LOCATION: Illinois – Project coordinators hope to expand BeeSpotter nationwide
  • Florida, citizen science, ocean More Science

    Old Weather


    Old Weather—part of the Zooniverse network of citizen science projects—seeks to gather and study information from ship’s logs as a means of better understanding historical weather patterns worldwide. The goal isn’t to prove or disprove global warming but rather to gather information about historical weather variability in an effort to improve the ability to predict weather and climate in the future.

    Over the past several centuries, ships have traveled around the world on voyages of exploration and trade, often recording accurate weather observations along the way. (In fact, it was an offense to falsify a log.) Of course, until recently ships’ logs were hand written and kept in disparate locations. Logbooks are difficult for a computer to analyze accurately, so the Old Weather project relies on citizen scientists to analyze scanned log pages and input the data appearing on each page.

    For example, one of the major areas of interest to Old Weather are log books from the English East India company in the period from the 1780s to the 1830s. About half of the logbooks that exist in the British library for those ships that trade between the UK and India or China have instrumental measurements Old Weather’s organizers would like to record.

    Old Weather citizen scientists visit the project’s home page, log in (see below), choose a ship and get started. Participants are assigned rank based upon the amount of data they input, all the way up to Captain. (It takes 30 weather reports more for promotion to Lieutenant, to give you some idea of how it works.)

    Old Weather’s organizers cross-check the data that is entered to catch as many errors or inconsistencies as possible.
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    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Philip Brohan, Climate Scientist
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • flowers, cherry blossom More Science

    Project BudBurst


    Project BudBurst launched in 2007 as a national field campaign designed to engage the public in the observation and collection of important ecological data based on the timing of leafing, flowering and fruiting of plants (aka plant phenophases). The data are collected in a consistent manner across the country so scientists can use this information to learn more about the responsiveness of individual plant species to changes in climate locally, regionally and nationally.

    BudBurst participants select that is convenient for them to observe on a regular basis and record their observations in a field journal (pdf) they download from the BudBurst Web site. Observers are asked to describe the site they are monitoring in terms of proximity to buildings, presence of asphalt surfaces, slope, sunlight and irrigation. In order to make meaningful observations, BudBurst organizers suggest checking out the Plant Resources section of their site.

    Observers create an account on the BudBurst site through which they input the data they have gathered. This data freely available to all in several formats.
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    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Sandra Henderson, Co-Director
    • DATES: Ongoing
    • LOCATION: – United States
  • bat, wisconson, citizen science More Science

    Wisconsin Bat Monitoring Program


    Scientific American reported in December that more than one million bats have been killed by the deadly fungal infection known as white-nose syndrome (WNS) since the condition first turned up in 2006. Bat populations are generally susceptible to decline because of low reproductive rates, and many species congregate at a limited number of locations during critical stages of their natural history cycle (i.e. hibernacula and maternity colonies). Lack of information on basic ecology and trends is one of the greatest limitations to conservation of bat species.

    Beaver Creek Reserve Citizen Science Center volunteers assist the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources with their Acoustic Bat Monitoring Program. Bat volunteers borrow AnaBat detection systems, dubbed the “Bat Monitoring Kit,” for up to three nights to conduct bat surveys of local parks, neighborhoods, lakes and trails. The AnaBat detector is attached to a GPS-enabled personal digital assistant. The detector picks up the echolocation calls emitted by bats and translates it to a frequency the human ear can hear. Each detection system records information about phenology and species presence. Data is entered into the Wisconsin Bat Monitoring Program database, with the long-term scope of this project to compile information about phenology, species presence, migration timing vs. residence, and trends of the bat species in Wisconsin.
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    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Jeanette Kelly, Citizen Science Center Director
    • DATES: Ongoing
    • LOCATION: Wisconsin
  • bird, observation, flamingo, citizen science More Science

    Cornell Lab of Ornithology: eBird


    Cornell Lab reports that more than 200,000 people contribute to its citizen-science projects each year. Scientists use these data to determine how birds are affected by habitat loss, pollution and disease. They trace bird migration and document long-term changes in bird numbers across the continent. The results have been used to create management guidelines for birds, investigate the effects of acid rain and climate change, and advocate for the protection of declining species.

    eBird is an on-line checklist project where you can enter and store your bird observations in a central database, track your personal records, and share your observations with other birders and scientists. Cornell also provides graphing, mapping and analysis tools to better understand patterns of bird occurrence and the environmental and human factors that influence them. This real-time data resource produces millions of observations per year.

    Launched in 2002 by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and National Audubon Society, eBird documents the presence or absence of species, as well as bird abundance through checklist data.

    A TalkingScience Citizen Science Buzz blog post from March 23, 2011, provides more insight into the eBird project.
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    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Janis Dickinson
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • Technology

    Participatory Urban Sensing


    Participatory Urban Sensing emphasizes the involvement of individuals and community groups in the process of sensing and documenting where they live, work, and play. It can range from private, personal observations to the combination of data from hundreds, or even thousands, to reveal patterns across a city.

    UCLA’s Center for Embedded Networked Sensing (CENS) puts Urban Sensing into action in projects that span a broad spectrum of subjects such as public health and wellness, environmental science and sustainability, urban planning, and cultural expression. For a listing of projects, visit their Web site. Examples of projects include:

    Cyclesense—CENS is designing an application that runs on mobile phones that enables bike commuters to log their bike route using GPS and provide geo-tagged annotations (images, text notes) along with automatic sensor data (accelerometer/sound) to infer the roughness and traffic density of the road. Using this information, CENS plans to create an interface to enable bike commuters to plan their route based on both safety and interest vectors. They are currently running a pilot, Biketastic, in which bikers can share their routes which are automatically annotated by noise level, roughness, variation in elevation and duration of stops.

    Family Dynamics—CNES is working with UCLA’s Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior to develop technologies to document key features of a family’s daily interactions (e.g., co-location, family meals, and consistency). The first coaching tool being prototyped is Andwellness, a personal health self-management application for the Android phones that supports flexible geo-spatial, social and activity triggered reminders and ecological momentary assessment.

    Personal Environmental Impact Report (PIER)This online tool allows you to use your mobile phone to explore and share how you impact the environment and how the environment impacts you.
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    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Deborah Estrin
    • DATES: Ongoing
    • LOCATION: – Urban settings
  • citizen science Evolution

    Scuttle Fly Study


    Researchers at Duke University’s Noor lab of Evolutionary Genetics are developing a new “model system” for addressing interesting evolutionary genetic questions: the scuttle fly, Megaselia scalaris. This species offers many interesting facets: for example, it bears homomorphic sex chromosomes, and sex is determined by a male-determining region that actually transposes among chromosomes at a low, but detectable, rate.

    The researchers are now in the process of obtaining complete, high-coverage genome sequences from males and females to isolate the region(s) distinguishing the sexes and begin deeper investigation into the genetic and evolutionary questions. Megaselia scalaris is both cosmopolitan and a “pest” species, being associated with myiasis and other infections of humans, as well as having potential forensic entomological applications. The researchers anticipate incidental benefits to society from explorations of this interesting biological system.
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    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Suzanne McGaugh
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • exoplanet Space

    Zooniverse: Planet Hunters


    Since 1995, more than 500 planets have been discovered to be orbiting stars outside our solar system. These exoplanets—terrestrial and larger planets orbiting other stars—are detected with help from NASA’s Kepler spacecraft, which launched in March 2009 with the goal of using the transit technique to detect exoplanets. With this method, planets that pass in front of their host stars block out some of the starlight causing the star to dim slightly for a few hours. The Kepler spacecraft stares at a field of stars in the Cygnus constellation and records the brightness of those stars every thirty minutes to search for transiting planets.

    The time series of brightness measurements for a star is called a light curve. The Kepler spacecraft beams data for more than 150,000 stars to Earth at regular intervals. With every download of data, the time baseline of the light curves is extended. The Kepler team’s computers are sifting through the data, but the Planet Hunters project is betting that there will be planets that can only be found via the human ability for pattern recognition.

    NASA is releasing light curves into the public archive to encourage broader participation, which is where you come in. Planet Hunters is an online experiment that taps into the power of human pattern recognition. Participants are partners with Zooniverse’s science team, who will analyze group assessments, obtain follow up observations at the telescope to understand the new classification schemes for different families of light curves, identify oddities, and verify transit signals. The main interface plots Kepler’s data on a chart and asks the citizen scientist questions about what they see, such as patterns or dips in light.
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    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Debra Fischer
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • Protein More Science

    Foldit Online Protein Puzzle


    Inside your cells, proteins allow your body to break down food to power your muscles, send signals through your brain that control the body, and transport nutrients through your blood. Every protein consists of a long chain of joined-together amino acids, which are small molecules made up of atoms of carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, sulfur and hydrogen. Small proteins can consist of 100 amino acids, whereas some human proteins are much larger, with thousands of amino acids.

    Each type of protein folds up into a very specific shape, which specifies the protein’s function. The Foldit exploration puzzle game attempts to predict the structure of a protein by taking advantage of our puzzle-solving intuitions and having people play competitively to fold the best proteins. Players can also design brand new proteins that could help prevent or treat important diseases.

    Another objective of the project is to find new proteins that can help in turning plants into fuel. For this to happen plant material must be broken down (this is currently done by microbial enzymes—proteins—called “cellulases”).

    This game is a product of a collaboration between University of Washington Departments of Computer Science & Engineering and Biochemistry.
    More »

    • DATES: Ongoing
  • Energy & Sustainability



    NatureMapping’s mission is to protect biodiversity through data collection and dissemination. It is designed to engage citizens of all ages in hands-on, technology-enabled exploration of our natural environment. It fosters an open exchange of scientific information among a growing network of universities, government agencies, science and nature centers, landowners, civic organizations, businesses and interested citizens.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Karen Dvornich
    • DATES: Ongoing
    • LOCATION: – The program is offered in 13 states, including Arkansas, California, Idaho, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.
  • More Science

    Nature’s Notebook


    A national plant and animal phenology observation program enabling participants to provide valuable observations that scientists, educators, policy makers and resource managers can use to understand how plants and animals are responding to climate change and other environmental changes. Phenology refers to recurring plant and animal life cycle stages. It is also the study of these recurring plant and animal life cycle stages, especially their timing and relationships with weather and climate. Nature’s Notebook offers opportunities for observing plants and animals, digitizing archival data for the North American Bird Phenology Program and sharing phenological plant or animal data taken by volunteers prior to joining the project.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Kristin Wisneski
    • DATES: Ongoing
  • earthquake Energy & Sustainability

    The Quake-Catcher Network


    The Quake-Catcher Network (QCN) is a collaborative initiative for developing the world’s largest, low-cost strong-motion seismic network by utilizing sensors in and attached to Internet-connected computers. Volunteers can help the Quake-Catcher Network provide better understanding of earthquakes, give early warning to schools, emergency response systems and others. The Quake-Catcher Network also provides educational software designed to help teach about earthquakes and earthquake hazards.
    More »

    • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Elizabeth Cochran
    • DATES: Ongoing


Journal of Wildlife Management


The Journal of Wildlife Management The Journal of Wildlife Management Published on behalf of 

The Wildlife Society

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Current Issue
The Journal of Wildlife Management
Volume 75, Issue 7, September 2011 

Online ISSN: 1937-2817
Print ISSN: 0022-541X

Copyright © 2011 The Wildlife Society


The role of state wildlife professionals under the public trust doctrine (pages 1539–1543)
Christian A. Smith
Article first published online: 26 JUL 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.202

Research Articles

Suburbs: dangers or drought refugia for freshwater turtle populations? (pages 1544–1552)
John H. Roe, Martha Rees and Arthur Georges
Article first published online: 2 AUG 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.219

Effects of implanted satellite transmitters on behavior and survival of female common eiders (pages 1553–1557)
Peter L. F. Fast, Marie Fast, Anders Mosbech, Christian Sonne, H. Grant Gilchrist and Sébastien Descamps
Article first published online: 4 AUG 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.220

Factors affecting detection probability of burrowing owls in southwest agroecosystem environments (pages 1558–1567)
Jeffrey A. Manning
Article first published online: 26 JUL 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.192

Using adult groups of red-cockaded woodpeckers for translocations and population augmentation (pages 1568–1573)
Erin M. Herbez, Michael J. Chamberlain and Douglas R. Wood
Article first published online: 26 JUL 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.198

Importance of juniper to birds nesting in piñon–juniper woodlands in northwest New Mexico (pages 1574–1580)
Clinton D. Francis, Catherine P. Ortega and John Hansen
Article first published online: 26 JUL 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.200

Vulture flight behavior and implications for aircraft safety (pages 1581–1587)
Michael L. Avery, John S. Humphrey, Trey S. Daughtery, Justin W. Fischer, Michael P. Milleson, Eric A. Tillman, William E. Bruce and W. David Walter
Article first published online: 26 JUL 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.205

Variation in life history and demography of the American black bear (pages 1588–1596)
Julie A. Beston
Article first published online: 26 JUL 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.195

Grizzly bear selection of avalanche chutes: Testing the effectiveness of forest buffer retention (pages 1597–1608)
Robert Serrouya, Bruce N. Mclellan, Gary D. Pavan and Clayton D. Apps
Article first published online: 27 JUL 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.196

Partitioning of anthropogenic watering sites by desert carnivores (pages 1609–1615)
Todd C. Atwood, Tricia L. Fry and Bruce R. Leland
Article first published online: 3 AUG 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.225

Evaluation of fecal DNA preservation techniques and effects of sample age and diet on genotyping success (pages 1616–1624)
Michael Panasci, Warren B. Ballard, Stewart Breck, David Rodriguez, Llewellyn D. Densmore III, David B. Wester and Robert J. Baker
Article first published online: 4 AUG 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.221

River otter population size estimation using noninvasive latrine surveys (pages 1625–1636)
Rebecca A. Mowry, Matthew E. Gompper, Jeff Beringer and Lori S. Eggert
Article first published online: 26 JUL 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.193

Habitat occupancy by riparian muskrats reveals tolerance to urbanization and invasive vegetation (pages 1637–1645)
Lisa A. Cotner and Robert L. Schooley
Article first published online: 26 JUL 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.197

Site occupancy and cavity use by the northern flying squirrel in the boreal forest (pages 1646–1656)
Caroline Trudeau, Louis Imbeau, Pierre Drapeau and Marc J. Mazerolle
Article first published online: 3 AUG 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.224


A model for integrating wildlife science and agri-environmental policy in the conservation of declining species (pages 1657–1663)
Noah G. Perlut, Allan M. Strong and Toby J. Alexander
Article first published online: 28 JUL 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.199

Marking ruby-throated hummingbirds with radio frequency identification tags (pages 1664–1667)
Larry W. Brewer, Christine A. Redmond, Jennifer M. Stafford and Gary E. Hatch
Article first published online: 5 AUG 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.222

Importance of scale in nest-site selection by Arizona gray squirrels (pages 1668–1674)
Nichole L. Cudworth and John L. Koprowski
Article first published online: 26 JUL 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.194

Book Reviews

Wildlife, forests and forestry: Principles of managing forests for biological diversity. Second edition. M. L. Hunter, Jr., and F. K. A. Schmiegelow. 2011. Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey, USA. 259 pp. $88.20 soft cover. ISBN-13: 978-0-13-501432-5 (page 1675)
Casey E. Phillips
Article first published online: 26 JUL 2011 | DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.209


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