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Tidbits & calendar


Calendar of
upcoming events

Saturday, June 14, 2008
Beneath the Crown: A Paleobotanical Perspective on the Green Tree of LifeDiane Erwin and John Miller present this workshop that provides an introduction to the "lost world" of plant diversity. Participants will learn about key major lineages of plants known only from the fossil record and their role in reconstructing the Green Tree of Life. See first-hand the evidence of extinct groups and learn about the evolutionary history of some of the oldest extant plant lineages including lycophytes, horsetails, ferns, and conifers. 9:00am–3:00pm Valley Life Sciences Building, UCB There is a fee; workshop limited to 20 participants. For more information contact Friends of the Jepson Herbarium at 510-643-7008, or visit the website.

To Heather and Scott Fay on the birth of their son Ulysses Finn Kelly-Fay, born on March 26, at a healthy 10 lbs., 22 in.

To Katie Brakora on her Fulbright award that will support a 10-month visit to Kenya where she will do museum work at the National Museums of Kenya, perform field observations and photography of juvenile spiral-horned antelope in parks across the country, and make a foray into the morphology of fossil taxa of the same group.

To Lorraine Casazza, who has been awarded a Geological Society of America Research Grant and a highly competitive award from the Paleontological Society, both to support her work in Egypt where she is conducting isotopic studies of the foraminiferal shells of Nummulites.

To Maya DeVries, who received a Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute Short-term Research Fellowship. Maya will be at the Naos Island Laboratories, Bocas del Toro Laboratory, and Galeta Marine Laboratory studying stomatopod feeding ecology.

To Randy Irmis and Jann Vendetti as the recipients of the 2008 Louderback Awards in paleontology. Annually the Louderback Fund makes awards to recognize both the academic accomplishments and contributions to museum and departmental activities of students in paleontology and the earth and planetary sciences.

To Joey Pakes, who received an NSF Graduate Fellowship to support her research on snails and remipedes in cave systems. She will be joining Professor Iliffe's team from Texas A&M in the Yucatan peninsula this summer to explore caves and collect samples for isotopic analysis back at Berkeley.

To Nick Pyenson on his postdoctoral research fellowship from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) to study the biomechanics and diversification of lunge-feeding baleen whales at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver.

The collections
We would like to thank Jim Ingle for donating Stanford's micropaleo collection to UCMP, which consists of ~12,000 slides, mostly of foraminifera.

UCMP contributions to the public understanding of science
It is not unusual for members of the UCMP community to be called upon by the media to provide expert commentary on new research that appears in the popular press. And recently, UCMP researchers have been right at the heart of the story on a diverse range of topics. In February, readers of Nature enjoyed reading and listening to Kevin Padian's reflections on what constitutes Darwin's enduring greatness (podcast). From the April 24th edition of The Christian Science Monitor, Jere Lipps offered his perspectives on possible life on Europa, a moon of Jupiter, in an article entitled "Beneath Arctic ice pack, teeming life holds extraterrestrial clues". Several articles in the popular press, including the San Francisco Chronicle, Discovery News, and Science Daily, shared the research of Roy Caldwell and Crissy Huffard on octopus sex, which was also highlighted in our own Evo in the News. And for the truly popular media, Matt Wedel, Sarah Werning, Ryosuke Motani, Sterling Nesbitt and Kevin Padian all served as consultants to the second edition of Walking with Dinosaurs!