Yang, who joined the Bohart Museum nine years ago, coordinates museum tours, classroom visits, special weekend hours, summer camp programs, and other outreach- activities that connect science and scientists with the public. She collaborate with interns, undergraduates, staff, graduate students and faculty to accomplish the outreach program.
Stacey Brezing, chair of the UC Davis Staff Assembly Citations of Excellence Committee, wrote to Yang: “It gives me great pleasure to notify you that you have been selected as the top selection for this category, the committee was greatly impressed with your work."
Yang will receive a cash prize of $1000 as a “gesture of appreciation for your contribution to the campus community,” Brezing said.
Nominations for the service award are based on achievements such as fostering engagement and inclusion in campus community, leadership, and volunteerism.
Yang was nominated, confidentially, by Lynn Kimsey, director of the Bohart Museum and professor of entomology at UC Davis; senior museum scientist Steve Heydon of the Bohart Museum, and Kathy Keatley Garvey, communications specialist for the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology.
They wrote: “Our nominee is a treasure, a one-of-a-kind gem and an all-around ambassador who exemplifies all that is good and great about UC Davis. A friendly and caring person who joined the campus museum workforce in 2009, she makes all of us feel needed, wanted, and appreciated as if we were ‘Person of the Year.' Throughout the year, she engages more than 20,000 children, families, students, faculty and staff who visit the museum or attend her science outreach programs. She enthusiastically and freely gives of her time to plan and participate in weekend open houses. She co-founded the annual UC Davis Biodiversity Museum Day six years ago, which this year drew 12 participating museums and an attendance of 3000. This year she chaired the committee.
“Five years ago, she launched an annual summer camp for children that is so popular it draws youths from around the nation, resulting in multiple camps and waiting lists. She helps coordinate the UC Davis Picnic Day activities in the museum, engaging more than 3500 excited and enthusiastic visitors. At the Solano County Ag Day, she shared scientific information with 3000 youngsters over a four-hour period, always smiling and genuinely interested in each person.
“Our nominee is kind, caring, thoughtful and never without a smile or a word of encouragement. She strongly believes in inclusion. For example, she wears a safety pin, a way of showing that she is a safe space for those who are afraid. She shows she is in solidarity with victims of racism, homophobia and religious discrimination and will protect everyone who feels in danger, regardless of gender, sexuality, race, disability or religion. 'You are safe with me!'
“We watched her lead a tour of children of migratory workers, educating them about what could be a lifelong interest or their occupation. ‘You can be anything you want to be. You can do this! We know you can!' She can reach the shyest of the shy.
“One volunteer at the museum says ‘Wherever I go, her name is legendary. People just rave about her and her work.' Said another: ‘She is one of the most patient, outgoing individuals I know who loves to teach and share information.'
“Said her supervisor: ‘She has greatly expanded our outreach programs, participating in Solano County Youth Ag Day, and many other STEM programs offered at libraries, schools and county facilities. She gives science outreach programs to about 15,000 adults and children every year. She is particularly good at working with groups of children and maintaining discipline at the same time as engaging them in the topic, so that everyone can see, hear and learn. We always request an evaluation from groups she talks to and they always rave about her presentations.'
“Our nominee is so appreciative! She always praises her volunteers individually and in departmental emails with “Thank you!”
“In summary, our nominee's exemplary service, high morale, encouragement, passion and inclusion are a treasure-trove of qualities that single her out as the gem she is.
The Staff Assembly's annual Citations of Excellence Awards Program provides recognition for individual staff and staff teams who have demonstrated outstanding achievement in one of the following areas: teaching, research, service, supervision and innovation. There is also a team award for campus community contributions and service. Teams include project or program staff, office staff, or other similar groups.
The Bohart Museum is a world-renowned insect museum that houses a global collection of nearly eight million specimens. It also maintains a live “petting zoo,” featuring walking sticks, Madagascar hissing cockroaches and tarantulas. A gift shop, open year around, includes T-shirts, sweatshirts, books, jewelry, posters, insect-collecting equipment and insect-themed candy.
The Bohart Museum's regular hours are from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 to 5 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays. The museum is closed to the public on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays and on major holidays. Admission is free.
More information on the Bohart Museum is available by contacting (530) 752-0493 or email@example.com.
So says entomologist Lynn Kimsey, director of the Bohart Museum of Entomology and professor of entomology at the University of California, Davis. “They amount to a mind-boggling, data-clogging nightmare.”
“This is a major deal for scientific teaching and research,” Kimsey emphasized. “Teachers who assign their students to make insect collections will now have to apply for a permit, and only eight persons are allowed on any one permit. Plus, they have to notify California Fish and Wildlife 48 hours in advance before they collect, and inform them what exactly they will be collecting. It doesn't matter what they're studying—cockroaches, wasps or corn earworms.”
“This will make it even more difficult to study or teach about insects in California,” she said, adding that “Today, California is the only state in the U.S. that requires collecting permits to collect any terrestrial invertebrates, insects, slugs, millipedes, spiders, etc. anywhere in the state, private property, parks, federal lands, cities even, if it's being done for scientific research or teaching in K-12 and college. Ironically, there are no permit requirements for amateur collectors who can collect as much as they want.”
“These requirements,” she said, “will make research and teaching on invertebrates, particularly insects so difficult that it might very well stop our training in entomology and drive researchers to work out of state.”
The permit information is posted online at: https://www.wildlife.ca.gov/Licensing/Scientific-Collecting.
Kimsey, who received her doctorate in entomology at UC Davis, has directed the Bohart Museum of Entomology, since 1990. The seventh largest insect collection in North America, it houses nearly eight million insect specimens (terrestrial and fresh water arthropods) collected globally. The museum is also home of the California Insect Survey, a storehouse of the insect biodiversity of California's deserts, mountains, coast, and the Great Central Valley. Founded in 1946 by its namesake and noted entomologist Richard M. Bohart (1913-2007) of UC Davis, the museum is dedicated to teaching, research and service.
In examining the proposed new rules for collecting insects, Kimsey cited seven crucial issues:
1. New Species. There may be as many as 100,000 species of terrestrial invertebrates in California and perhaps 6 percent are new to science. “This is far more species than we have the expertise in-state to identify,” she pointed out. “Sometimes it takes decades for someone to study a particular group. So it's impossible to give CDFW identifications much more detailed than Insecta for the permit paperwork.”
2. All Insects. These permit requirements apply whether “you're surveying the insects of a vernal pool or the distribution of dangerous invasive species, such as the yellow fever mosquito,” Kimsey said. “They also apply to the study of pest species, such as cockroaches and bedbugs.”
3. Bureaucracy. The required fees and detailed reports are onerous, obtrusive and seem to punish researchers and students studying and learning about insects, Kimsey declared. Permits take 6-8 weeks to be awarded and every time a change is needed, an emendation fee applies. “At UC Davis we are on the quarter system, which is 10 weeks. This means that a permit would be awarded by the time a class requiring students to make a collection is nearly over.”
4. Identification. “When we collect insects,” Kimsey explained, “we generally do not know what we've found until the material has been sorted, curated and identified to major group under the microscope--the vast majority of insects cannot be sight-identified and most are less than 1/4 inch long. This could take weeks and months. Specimens then need to be examined by experts who could be anywhere in the world.”
5. Chain of Custody. Every time the Bohart Museum of Entomology, home of nearly eight million insect specimens, ships specimens collected in California to an expert, “we would have to do CDFW chain-of-custody paperwork,” Kimsey said. “We take in an average of 30,000 specimens a year from university researchers and students. We loan up to 1,000 specimens a year to experts around the world. The paperwork would be crushing.”
6. Non-Target Insects. CDFW also requires permitees to account for by-catch, that is, non-target insects. “It's not clear if this includes insects collected on the radiator while driving in the study site,” she said.
7. Crime Scenes. Permits would also be required for the study of insects at crime scenes and any training that pertains to forensic entomology.
Kimsey said the simplest solution to this issue is “to simply remove terrestrial invertebrates from the permit requirements. But after the recent public meeting, that seems unlikely to happen.”
“We cannot see any benefit to the state in requiring permits for invertebrates when the information gained would be close to useless,” Kimsey declared. “California Wildlife and Wildlife informed us that the permit fees were necessary to cover the costs of dealing with the specimen data, but the data will not be useful and it would make much more sense to simply not cover terrestrial invertebrates.”
The entire data collection/permit process would result in a mind-boggling, data-clogging nightmare, she said. “If everyone in the state working on insects and teaching about them sent the specimen data to CDFW, they might be dealing with hundreds of thousands of data entries and thousands of reports annually, most of which would provide very little data. This amounts to an unfunded mandate, which will cost museums, scientists and teachers time and money. Museums would literally have to hire additional personnel to do the paperwork.”
Editor's Note: Not many people, apparently, were aware of this or that "All written comments must be received by the Department via mail or email no later than 5:00 p.m., May 8, 2017, as outlined in the Notice." Comments are continuing. (https://www.wildlife.ca.gov/Notices/Regulations/SCP)
California Department of Fish and Wildlife
Regulations Unit - Scientific Collecting Permits
Attn: Ona Alminas, Environmental Scientist
1416 Ninth Street, Room 1342-A
Sacramento, CA 95814
Chemical ecologist Elvira Simone de Lange, a postdoctoral researcher in the Christian Nansen lab, UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, has received a three-year $249,878 federal grant that involves using drones to detect the early infestation of spider mites, and then targeting the pests with biocontrol agents.
The grant is from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Western Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) Program.
Her research project, "Unmanned Aerial System (UAS)-Guided Releases of Predatory Mites for Management of Spider Mites in Strawberry," aims to identify “very subtle differences in reflectance of the strawberry canopy, indicating spider mite-induced stress,” she said. “Releasing predatory mites in these spider mite hotspots will increase their efficacy as biocontrol agents, enhancing sustainability of spider mite management practices in strawberry.”
In her successfully funded proposal, she noted that “Farmers are requesting in-depth testing of how UAS can be integrated successfully into strawberry production to improve management practices.” UAS, or drones, can monitor large areas in a short period of time. California produces 88 percent of the nation's strawberries, with an annual value of approximately $2.6 billion.
The three-year project, now underway through March 2020, also explores the use of drones as a novel, effective way of distributing the predatory mites.
The grant also calls for educational outreach programs, with hands-on workshops and lectures on spider mite sampling at grower and agriculture professional meetings throughout the California strawberry growing region. Growers outside this area will be reached through publications in trade journals and other grower media.
Multiple species of spider mites infest the state's strawberry fields. The twospotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae, an annual pest of strawberries in all growing regions, is the predominant species in strawberries grown on the Central Coast, according to the UC Statewide Integrated Pest Management Program's Pest Management Guidelines (PMG), written by lead author and IPM specialist Frank Zalom, distinguished professor of entomology, UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology.
The mites suck plant juices. The damage can result in decreased fruit size and yield. Mite-feeding symptoms include dense webbing, and dry, brittle and discolored leaves.
“Twospotted spider mite feeding is particularly damaging during the first two to five months following transplanting in late summer or fall,” according to the PMG.
A native of The Netherlands, de Lange joined the Nansen lab in March 2016. She received her bachelor's degree in biology, and her master's degree in plant biology from Utrecht University, The Netherlands. She earned her doctorate in chemical ecology from the University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland. Her first postdoctoral position was at Rutgers University, New Jersey, where she worked on insect resistance in cranberries.
Overall, she hopes her research meshing chemical ecology, entomology, plant-arthropod interactions and biological control in the fields of integrated pest management and precision agriculture solutions, will “lead to the development of novel, sustainable pest management practices.”
Carey, described as “a truly outstanding teacher,” was named a semifinalist and received a $1000 honorarium. Approximately 100 applicants began the initial process.
“Dr. James Carey epitomizes the scholar-teacher,” said Cherry Award committee member Kevin Dougherty, associate professor of sociology. “He is a prodigious author with multiple books and hundreds of research articles. Millions of dollars in grants have funded his research. Yet, Dr. Carey has done more than produce knowledge. He is an innovative, international leader in interdisciplinary teaching and learning. He is an entomologist who teaches courses on aging, crime, and war to classes ranging in size from 20 to 200 plus. Over a thousand instructional videos also feature Dr. Carey. Dr. James Carey is the type of exemplary scholar-teacher for which Baylor University's Robert Foster Cherry Award for Great Teaching exists.”
The Cherry Award program is “designed to honor great teachers, to stimulate discussion in the academy about the value of teaching, and to encourage departments and institutions to value their own great teachers.” Nominees are from all over the English-speaking world.
The three finalists, to present a series of lectures in the fall of 2017, are Heidi G. Elmendorf, biology, Georgetown University; Neil K. Garg, chemistry, University of California, Los Angeles; and Clinton O. Longenecker, leadership, The University of Toledo. Each receives $15,000, and the home department, $10,000, to foster the development of teaching skills. The winning professor, to be announced in spring 2018, will thus receive a total of $265,000, and $35,000 for his or her home department. (link finalists to http://www.baylor.edu/mediacommunications/news.php?action=story&story=178907)
Carey, who joined the UC Davis faculty in 1980, is nationally and internationally recognized for his innovative teaching program that centers on the strategic use of digital technology. He received the 2015 Distinguished Achievement in Teaching Award from the Entomological Society of America (ESA); the 2014 Distinguished Teaching Award from the Pacific Branch of ESA; and the UC Davis Academic Senate's 2014 Distinguished Teaching Award, an honor given to internationally recognized professors who excel at teaching.
- Bio-micrometeorologist Ian Faloona, associate professor in the Department of Land, Water and Air Resources, who will speak on “The Universality of Our Fluid Motions: An Experiment in Geophysical Dance”
- Artist Chris Fraser of San Francisco, whose topic is “The Tethered Image”and
- Visual artist/filmmaker Alison O'Daniel of Los Angeles, who will discuss “Quasi-Closed Captions: The Tuba Thieves.”
The event, free and open to the public, takes place from 5:30 to 7 p.m. in Room 115 of the Music Building. A reception begins at 5:30, with the speaker presentations booked at 6 p.m., followed by conversations and rapid fire sharing at 6:45. Reservations are recommended; see ucdlaser03.eventbrite.com.
The LASER events engage the public as participants in conversations with artists, designers, scientists and technologies making significant contributions to their fields, according to coordinators Jiayi Young, assistant professor, Department of Design; and Diane Ullman, professor of entomology, UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology.
Faloona, who holds a doctorate in meteorology from Pennsylvania State University, studied physical chemistry at UC Santa Cruz and conducted research in computational chemistry at Los Alamos National Lab before earning his doctorate. He served as a postdoctoral researcher in the Advanced Study Program at the National Center for Atmospheric Research before joining the UC Davis faculty.
Alison O'Daniel works across film, sculpture, performance and music, inviting audiences and collaborators "to navigate, de-construct and re-imagine sound." Her current film, “The Tuba Thieves,” is comprised of narrative film, performance and sculptures based on commissioned musical scores made in response to an epidemic of tuba thefts occurring in Los Angeles high schools. Her solo exhibitions have included Art In General, New York, and Samuel Freeman Gallery, Los Angeles. Among publications showcasing her work: The New York Times, Artforum, Los Angeles Times, and ArtReview. O'Daniel received her bachelor's degree in fibers and material studies from the Cleveland Institute of Art; a post-graduate diploma, fine arts, from Goldsmiths College, University of London; and her master's degree in studio art from UC Irvine.
Chris Fraser, who teaches photography at Mills College, Oakland, is an artist who makes perceptual apparatuses and environments modeled on historic image-making technologies. To Fraser, photographs are unbound by the time and place of their origin and able to meet anyone, anywhere at anytime. “Although much is gained through this freedom, distance is placed between the objects of the world and the images we make of them,” Fraser says. Through his work with apparatuses such as the camera obscura, Fraser says he puts “objects and their images back in dialogue with each other, sacrificing broad distribution for an experience of image that is local and ephemeral.” He will focus his talk on the relationship between objects and images, and how images are regarded when they are physically tethered in space and time to their object and the shifts that occur when the two drift apart. His talk will be accompanied by a live demo in a dark theatre.
The LASER events at UC Davis were launched by the UC Davis Art/Science Fusion Program, co-founded and co-directed by entomologist/artist Diane Ullman of the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, and self-described "rock artist" Donna Billick of UC Davis. Artist/plant scientist Anna Davidson of the UC Davis Art/Science Fusion Program recently moderated and coordinated the LASER events.