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Jesse Lasky

Biodiversity, Oddities, and Conservation of Southeast Asian Tropical Forests

 

Taylor Sultan Quedensley

Lichenized-fungi of Texas: Biology, Ecology, and Distribution of a Diverse Group of Understudied Organisms

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Lichens are a diverse group of organisms in Texas, occupying many different types of habitats throughout the state. There are over 500 species reported for the state, and the number is undoubtedly greater considering the relatively low amount of collecting that has been conducted. With a diverse flora and fauna well-reported for Texas, lichens also need to be included in the discussion of the state’s high biodiversity levels, and also towards developing conservation strategies for threatened ecosystems.

Hayley Gillespie

Texas Salamander Extravaganza

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Hayley is a graduate student studying the ecology and behavior of the endangered Barton Springs Salamander (Eurycea sosorum) that lives right here in Austin, Texas. Texas is home to many species of salamanders including the giant black & yellow tiger salamanders, two-legged Sirens, waterdogs, spotted newts, slimy salamanders and a diverse group of permanently aquatic salamanders in the genus Eurycea, all very closely related to our Barton Springs Salamander. Come and learn about their incredible biology, how they survive in all kinds of habitats, and what’s being done to conserve and protect these fascinating amphibians!

Evan Economo

The Ways of the Ant

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Ants have evolved ingenious solutions to nature’s problems.  They are farmers, trappers, builders, herders, gliders, water-walkers, and much more.  Perhaps most interesting of all – like humans, they form complex societies that function with no central control.  We explore the many oddities of the ant world.

Sahotra Sarkar

The Balcones Canyonlands

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We will talk about the Hill County and the remarkable animals and plants that make up its biotic community. How well are we preserving this biodiversity? What is its future? What will climate change do to it?