Dr. Lucash visits SUNY-ESF in Syracuse, NY

I met with many students and faculty in the Env Biology and Forestry departments at SUNY-ESF and gave a seminar on my research. It was great to see faculty I hadn’t seen in years (Russ Briggs and Tom Horton!!) and meet some new (and impressive) faculty at ESF. My host, Dr. Don Leopold, was awesome, laying out the “red carpet. He even treated me to a giant margherita to end my 2-week soujourn to the east coast. It was an exhausting trip, but also a lot of fun!


Our REU student teaches middle school students about climate change


In Nov 2017, Terry Marcey, senior at PSU and REU student on our Klamath grant, lead a climate change outreach activity with students at Stayton Middle School in Stayton, OR. The classroom experiment was carried out in Nikita Noelcke’s and Lindsey Kaufman’s 6th grade classrooms. The activity that he carried out consisted of creating aluminum foil models of Antarctica, its mountains, and its ice shelves. We then created a slime solution from Elmer’s glue and borax, which had a viscosity that was meant to mimic the flow of ice towards the ocean on Antarctica. The students placed the slime on the model continent, removed the foil walls that represented the ice shelves, and observed the flow of ice to the oceans. We then looked at time lapse images of the collapse of the Larsen B ice shelf in 2002. We ended the activity by asking students what they thought they could do in their own lives to reduce the impacts of climate change. The activity that we performed was found on the Climate, Literacy, and Energy Awareness Network’s website:


Fieldwork in Interior Alaska

Fieldwork began in June for the Interior Alaska project looking at impacts of increased fire frequency and climate change on boreal forests. Shelby spent the month collecting vegetation data in upland black spruce forests with Dr. Brian Buma (Univ. Colorado-Denver) and Katherine Hayes (PhD student at Univ. Colorado-Denver).  As of today, Shelby finished her work in the field and will be working at the Missouri Botanical Garden in St. Louis until she starts her PhD program at PSU in September. 

Shelby standing in a former black spruce-dominated stand that burned twice over a 60 year period. 

Shelby standing in a former black spruce-dominated stand that burned twice over a 60 year period.