Hastings College hosts Crane Trust scientist for Sustainability Leadership Presentation Series

The Sustainability Leadership Presentation Series (SLPS) presents “Measuring Sustainability: Using Animals as Indicators of Ecological Integrity” with Dr. Nico Arcilla, lead scientist at the Crane Trust on Thursday, March 7 from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. in the Hastings College Wilson Center Auditorium (714 E. 9th Street). The program is free and open to the public.

Acrilla will demonstrate how humans can use animal studies to measure environmental sustainability through applications for both terrestrial and aquatic environments, using both sentinel species and animal community indexes with different sensitivities to environmental disturbance.

Just as the canary in the coal mine alerted people to the air quality underground, animal species or population declines signal problems such as excessive exploitation, deteriorating habitat or environmental pollution. By acting to mitigate impacts and monitoring animals’ responses, researchers can assess the effectiveness of conservation efforts.

SLPS programs are held on the first Thursday of each month during the school calendar year, with the host location rotating among members schools.

Hastings College is a member of the SLPS along with Central Community College, Metropolitan Community College, University of Nebraska–Lincoln, University of Nebraska–Omaha, Joslyn Institute for Sustainable Communities, Creighton University and the Nebraska Recycling Council

Bio for Dr .Nico Acrilla

Acrilla is lead scientist at the Crane Trust, where she conducts collaborative research on migratory bird ecology and conservation in response to land management and climate change. She has 20 years of experience studying ecological communities and populations and their responses to human impacts. To date, she has co authored nearly 40 scientific publications on birds and other wildlife in the Americas, Africa and Madagascar, Europe and the Middle East and the tropical Pacific.

Prior to joining the Crane Trust, she held postdoctoral positions in conservation biology and avian ecology at the Smithsonian Institution and Drexel University. She earned her BA from Yale University, MS from Cornell University and PhD from the University of Georgia.

Hastings College is a private, four-year institution located in Hastings, Nebraska, that focuses on student academic and extracurricular achievement. Hastings College has been named among “Great Schools, Great Prices” by U.S. News & World Report and a “Best in the Midwest” by The Princeton Review. For more, go to hastings.edu.

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