Cape Horn Research on Beavers in the News!

Fighting an Invasion: Mocksville ecologist helps fight a scourge of beavers in Chile

Winston-Salem Journal
By Andrew Marra
Buenos Aires, Argentina


It must have seemed like a good idea at the time: In 1946, hoping to start a fur trade, the Argentine government released 50 North American beavers in the sub-Antarctic islands on South America’s southern tip.

Click here for the whole article.

To see animation of the beaver invasion across the archipelago, click here.

Board Meeting – November 2007

During its board meeting held in November 2007, OSARA directors approved the following measures:

1) OSARA President Dr. Christopher Anderson will propose a study abroad course to be held in conjuntion with the University of North Texas, OSARA, the Universidad de Magallanes, the Institute of Ecology and Biodiversity and CADIC (Ushuaia, Argentina), which will be carried out from May to June 2008. The international conservation course will focus on the integration of science and society using the case of the Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve as a model. The UNESCO’s Man and Biosphere Program, as well as the relevance of “long-term socioecological study sites,” will be emphasized as vehicles to link research and decision-making.

2) Michelle Moorman, who has worked on various projects in the CHBR including her masters, was extended an invitation to become a director for a 3-year period. Michelle is currently a Ph.D. student at North Carolina State University and works as a hydrological technician at the U.S. Geological Survey.

3) As part of a series of measures to revitilze the functioning of OSARA, the board also decided to increase the size and formalilze the role of its advisory panel. The panel will now meet annually, and be charged with specific tasks under the direction of the president. In addition to current panel members Drs. Ricardo Rozzi, William Buck and John Silander, new panel members for 2008 include:

Dr. Andrés Mansilla
Director of Research and Graduate Programs, University of Magallanes
Coordinator of Marine-Terrestrial LTER, IEB-UMAG-Omora

Dr. Juan Armesto
Professor, Center for Advanced Studies in Ecology and Biodiversity
Assistant Director, Institute of Ecology and Biodiversity
President, Senda Darwin Foundation

Dr. Jim Kennedy
Professor, University of North Texas
Director, Elm Fork Creek Natural History Museum

Dr. Amy D. Rosemond
Professor, Odum School of Ecology, University of Georgia

4) In addition, the board moved forward on various issues, including defining a communication and meeting strategy, exploring options to contract staff assistance, and defining new goals in membership and donations. Results from these decisions will be forthcoming.

5) The meeting schedule for 2008 is set for the third Sunday of January, April, July and October.

Cape Horn Research Highlighted in the News

Research on the effects of invasive beavers in the Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve, conducted by OSARA President Dr. Christopher Anderson, has been featured in the 16 news outlets owned by the Cox News Service. The article notes the significant efforts being made in the CHBR to link research with management implications. In addition, it focuses on the collaboration with the University of Georgia in this international initiative.

To read the piece from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, click here.

A shorter version can also be found in the Arkansas Democrat Gazette, click here.

Biodiversity Of Southernmost Forests And Tundra Ecosystems

The recent article concerning the diversity of non-vascular flora in the Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve, published by Dr. Ricardo Rozzi (OSARA Advisor), Dr. Christopher Anderson (OSARA President) and their colleagues from Chile, the U.K. and the U.S., has begun to receive attention in the press:

ScienceDaily(Oct. 26, 2007)

The definition of conservation priorities for biodiversity often focuses only on the numbers of vertebrate animals and seed plants in the northern hemisphere or in the tropics. But what about the other organisms, and the more extreme regions of the world, where the species richness of flowering plants and mammals is low? An interdisciplinary team of US, UK and Chilean taxonomists, ecologists, and philosophers explored the world’s southernmost forest and tundra ecosystems to estimate the diversity of the dominant vegetation, namely tiny bryophytes and lichens growing on trees, soils and rocks.

To see the rest of the story, click here

To see another article, published in Scenta, click here.

Ecosystem engineers: North American beavers change functioning of subantarctic stream ecosystems

A recent issue of Columns, the University of Georgia research magazine, highlighted the research being conducted by Dr. Christopher Anderson (OSARA President) and Dr. Amy Rosemond (OSARA Advisor) in the Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve. Their work has shown that the introduction of the North American beaver (Castor cannadensis) has caused increases in stream ecosystem function, while at the same time decreasing aquatic diversity. These research findings are being used as well for a regional invasive species management plan.

Click here for the whole article.

Annual Board of Directors Meeting

On October 21, 2007, the OSARA Board of Directors held its annual meeting. The Board unanimously passes the following resolutions:


1. By motion and unanimous consent, the Board of Directors of the Omora Sub-Antarctic Research Alliance requests that Dr. Christopher Anderson develop a plan to incorporate a student worker-staff person based at the University of North Texas in the Chile Program Office created by Dr. Ricardo Rozzi. The plan will be evaluated at the next board meeting.

2. By motion and unanimous consent, the Board of Directors of the Omora Sub-Antarctic Research Alliance hereby requests that Mr. Andrew Holton develop an action plan for its Advisory Panel.

3. By motion and unanimous consent, the Board of Directors of the Omora Sub-Antarctic Research Alliance hereby approves as officers Dr. Christopher Anderson (President), Mr. Steven McGehee (Vice-President), Mr. Andrew Holton (Secretary), Mr. Carl Fisher (Treasurer) and Dr. Gene Hargrove (Director).

4. By motion and unanimous consent, the Board of Directors of the Omora Sub-Antarctic Research Alliance hereby sets for its next meeting date the 18th of November, 2007. Notification will be sent by Secretary Holton to directors.