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Warnell alum named to 40 Under 40 Class of 2015

A Warnell School alumna has been named to the 40 Under 40 Class of 2015. Sharon Holbrooks (BSFR ’04, MS ’07) is one of the newest honorees in the program, which recognizes exceptional young alumni who are achieving great success in their professional and personal endeavors. Holbrooks is a conservation easement specialist at the USDA’s National Resources Conservation Service. Full story

New UGA study shows that “southern pine decline” isn’t happening on a large scale

Researchers at the University of Georgia have a message for Southern tree farmers worried about unexplainable pine tree deaths: Don’t panic. A new study published in Forest Ecology and Management analyzed growth in thousands of pine tree plots across the Southeast and indicates that “southern pine decline” isn’t happening on a large scale. Some earlier reports and studies had hinted at large-scale deaths of pine trees from unexplained reasons. But looking at the hard data shows that this is not the case, said Kamal Gandhi, an associate professor and forest health expert at UGA’s Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources. Full story

Dr. Kamal Gandhi named UGA Writing Fellow

Congratulations to Warnell’s Dr. Kamal Gandhi, who has been named a Center for Teaching and Learning Writing Fellow for the 2015-2016 year. Full story

Natural wilderness areas need buffer zones to protect from human development, new Warnell publication says

Despite heavy development, the U.S. still has millions of acres of pristine wild lands. Coveted for their beauty, these wilderness areas draw innumerable outdoor enthusiasts eager for a taste of primitive nature. But University of Georgia researchers say these federally protected nature areas have a problem: Their boundaries have become prime real estate. Full story

Warnell students take high honors in poster competition

At the 33rd Southern Forest Tree Improvement Conference (SFTIC) held this week in Hot Springs, Arkansas, two Warnell graduate students swept the poster competition. Full story

Researchers organize largest gopher tortoise release in Georgia near Waynesboro

Georgia’s gopher tortoise population got a significant boost with the arrival of 153 tortoises on Friday, June 5, at 9 a.m. at Yuchi Wildlife Management Area near Waynesboro. A collaboration between the University of Georgia Savannah River Ecology Laboratory, St. Catherines Island Foundation, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources and Reed Bingham State Park resulted in the largest gopher tortoise release to date in Georgia. Full story

Warnell researchers edit plant DNA using mechanism evolved in bacteria

Researchers at the Warnell School have used a gene editing tool known as CRISPR/Cas to modify the genome of a tree species for the first time. Their research, published recently in the early online edition of the journal New Phytologist, opens the door to more rapid and reliable gene editing of plants. By mutating specific genes in Populus—a genus of deciduous trees that includes poplar, aspen and cottonwood—the researchers reduced the concentrations of two naturally occurring plant polymers. One is called lignin, which traps sugars and starches used for biofuel production inside the tree’s sturdy cell walls. The other is known as condensed tannin, and its presence in leaves and barks of the tree deters feeding by ruminants, such as deer, cattle, goats and sheep. Full story

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Faculty Employment

Wildlife Outreach (8/1/15)

Forest Health Outreach (8/1/15)

Forest Taxation and Economics Outreach (8/1/15)

Forest Operations (7/15/15)

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