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News from the Media

Connecticut River Flow Restoration Report Released
July 11, 2018

A new decade-long study of the Connecticut River watershed has provided scientists some valuable tools for understanding how dams affect a river’s ecological health, but also suggests that little can be done to alter dam operations for environmental gain. Christine Hatch, UMass extension associate professor of geosciences, comments. (Gazette 7/10/18; News Office 6/13/18)

Climate Change Is Making Allergies Worse, UMass Professor Comments
July 10, 2018

Kristina A. Stinson, environmental conservation, discusses how climate change affects allergies, that with warming temperatures, spring is coming earlier and in response to higher levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, plants are producing more pollen. She also says warmer air traps smog and pollution. (WCAI 7/5/18)

UMass Tawny Simisky Discusses Gypsy Moth Caterpillar Issues on WBUR
June 22, 2018

When that rain-like sound in your oak trees is actually gypsy moth caterpillars pooping, and what you can do about it. (WBUR 6/22/18)

Mass leads Nation in Wildland-Urban Interface, UMass Professor Remarks
June 18, 2018

With changes in habitat, animal adaptation, restrictions on hunting and trapping, and the strategic reintroduction of extirpated wildlife, wild animals have become a fact of life in many communities around Greater Boston. "Because of the way Massachusetts is settled, growing wildlife populations are particularly likely to come into contact with humans," said Paige Warren, an associate professor of environmental conservation at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. (Globe 6/15/18)

UMass Testing Mosquitos for National Science Foundation
June 18, 2018

The University of Massachusetts Amherst’s Laboratory of Medical Zoology (LMZ), better known for its national tick-borne disease testing service, has begun mosquito testing with the arrival of 15,000 vials of mosquitoes collected from 47 sites across the continent as part of National Science Foundation’s National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON) project, says microbiologist and LMZ director Stephen Rich. (WFXTV-25, News Office 6/6/18)

Dual-use Solar Panels and Crops Story Notes UMass Pilot Program
June 11, 2018

A story about dual-use farms, where crops are planted around and under solar panels, notes that one pilot program at UMass Amherst grows a variety of plants, including kale, peppers, beans, cilantro and tomatoes, below solar panels elevated between 7.5 feet and 9 feet above the ground. (Scientific American 6/6/18)

UMass Research: Common Antimicrobial Ingredient Linked to Bowel Cancer
May 31, 2018

A large research team led by senior author Guodong Zhang at the University of Massachusetts Amherst reports that the antimicrobial ingredient triclosan, found in hand soaps and toothpastes among other products, could have adverse effects on colonic inflammation and colon cancer by altering gut microbiota, the microbes found in our intestines. (Jordan Times 7/2/18; Sky Chronicle 6/11/18; Medicalnewser 6/10/18; ChemicalWatch 6/7/18;, Science and Technology Reserach News, Health Care Purchasing News 6/4/18;  Salon 6/3/18, Minneapolis Star Tribune, LA Times, Popular Science,, CBS Boston, The Patch 5/31/18, Daily Mail [UK],  Stamford Advocate [The Conversation] 5/30/18;,,,, 5/31/18; News Office Release)

UMass Amherst is Ground Zero for Tick Research
May 26, 2018

Stephen M. Rich, microbiology and director of the Laboratory of Medical Zoology and the Tick Testing Lab, is quoted in an article highlighting the dangers of tick bites. UMass Amherst, the report says, “is ground zero for tick research. Every week, thousands of people from across the country send ticks to its TickReport program to be tested for diseases." (CNN 5/26/18)

A Serious Tick Season is Here, Just Like Always, Professor Rich Comments
May 15, 2018

Prof. Stephen Rich, a microbiologist at UMass-Amherst and the director of its Laboratory of Medical Zoology, says there’s no such thing as a light tick season. They’re all bad. (The Sun Chronicle 5/14/18)

Using Biodiversity to Weather a Changing World, UMass Weighs In
May 9, 2018

UMass extension educator and “Fruit Advisor,” Jon Clements advises commercial fruit growers across the state on the best practices to cultivate their crop and turn a profit against the reality of a changing climate. (Gazette 5/9/18)