Where it winters, why that matters

The prothonotary warbler, which in summer breeds in eastern and central North America, including Ohio, spends winter in just one country in South America. So says a new study led by Christopher Tonra, assistant professor in CFAES’ School of Environment and Natural Resources. The finding, Tonra said, “speaks to how important habitat protection in this one country is to the (birds’) overall population.” Read the story. (Photo: Male prothonotary warbler, Getty Images.)

Opinion: Science lacking in proposed waters of the U.S. rule

A new article led by Mažeika Sullivan, associate professor in CFAES’ School of Environment and Natural Resources (SENR), explains how the new proposed waters of the U.S. rule, which administers the Clean Water Act, fails to consider the best available science. If enacted, the rule could put millions of acres of wetlands and millions of miles of streams at risk, with severe consequences to environmental quality and human well-being. The article appeared recently in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Read the article.

Sullivan also serves as the director of SENR’s Wilma H. Schiermeier Olentangy River Wetland Research Park.

Reducing fertilizer runoff into waterways

By Alayna DeMartini, CFAES Marketing and Communications

A new report details laws across the United States intended to decrease the amount of key nutrients in fertilizer from entering rivers, lakes, and streams. The report was written by Peggy Hall, agricultural and resource law field specialist with CFAES, and Ellen Essman, a CFAES research associate.

In addition to examining laws, the report also describes measures that various states have taken to encourage farmers to voluntarily participate in practices that reduce the amount of nitrogen or phosphorus, both critical ingredients in fertilizer, from leaving the farm fields on which they were applied.

Excessive nitrogen and phosphorus in water can encourage the growth of harmful algal blooms that can contaminate surface and drinking water supplies.

Find out more and download the report.

A day to make the most of manure

You’ll find lots of fertile topics for discussion at this year’s Manure Science Review. Set for Wednesday, Aug. 7, at JIMITA Holsteins in Strasburg, Ohio, the event will keep you up to date on putting manure to good use. Featured will be talks by CFAES and other experts, field demonstrations, and a tour of Bull Country Compost located nearby in Dundee. Registration is $25 by July 30; $30 after July 30; and includes coffee, doughnuts, lunch, and the tour. Participants can earn credits for continuing education. Get details. (Photo: Getty Images.)

Gentlepeople, start your electric engines

Ohio State hosts its third Smart Columbus Ride & Drive Roadshow on June 20–21 in Columbus. You’ll find, yes, a frunkload of details on the sustainability, economic, and fun-to-drive benefits of electric cars. And you’ll have chances to test drive some of them, including Hondas, BMWs, and Teslas. You can also learn about the Smart Columbus initiative.

Continue reading

These students and crops are for change

Some Ohio State students are spending their summer helping fight hunger. Working at the 4-acre Ohio State Student Farm, located at CFAES’ Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Laboratory in Columbus, the students are growing more than 30 kinds of fruits and vegetables, are learning about and practicing urban farming, and are donating some of what they grow to local food security efforts.

Read more in a new CFAES Story called “Crops for change.”