Journalists dig into ecology at the Harvard Forest

Network News Spring 2012, Vol. 25 No. 2
Site News

As part of a hands-on course in global change research, six science journalists participating in the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) Logan Science Journalism Program spent three days at the Harvard Forest LTER in May, working alongside scientists to count Hemlock Woolly Adelgid, measure tree seedlings in herbivore exclosures, quantify carbon dioxide fluxes from a soil warming experiment, and core down to ice-aged sediments in the Black Gum Swamp.

Christopher Neill of MBL's Ecosystems Center designed the course to highlight LTER global change research and give journalists a hands-on window into the scientific process. This year, MBL scientist Jerry Melillo, Harvard Forest scientists David Foster and David Orwig, and Highstead scientist Ed Faison were mentors for the Harvard Forest visit. 

Journalists in the program, which in the past has visited Arctic (ARC) LTER’s Toolik Field Station in Alaska and Palmer LTER in Antarctica, collect field data, analyze the information, then distill that work into short presentations. Participants in the 2012 program at Harvard Forest were Madeleine Amberger from Austrian Broadcasting, Karin Klein from the Los Angeles Times, Maggie Koerth-Baker from, Eric Niiler from Discovery News, and freelance writers Kathiann Kowalski and Virginia Carmichael.

·         See blogs from past programs: ARC LTER, PAL LTER.

·         Follow Maggie Koerth-Baker's blog of her Harvard Forest experience.