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Visitors to the Lab
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Tiago do Prado Paim 

Tiago is a graduate student from University of Brasilia (Brasilia city, DF, Brazil). He has as US advisors Dr. Milt Thomas from CSU and Dr. Harvey Blackburn from NAGP.  He would like to sharpen his skills in genomic analysis of ruminants species applied to conservation and breeding programs.


 

Hymerson Costa Azevedo

Hymerson is a research scientist at Embrapa Costal Tablelands (Aracaju city, State of Sergipe, Brazil) and his field of expertise is animal reproduction. Since 2014 he has started a collaboration with Dr. Phil Purdy with sheep reproduction with the objective to optimize ex situ methods in order to improve in situ and ex situ conservation programs in Brazil.


 

Project Short Summary:

The Minnesota and Texas Agriculture team is investigating the use of remote sensing to detect crop wild relatives. Using NASA Earth Observations, including Landsat 4 & 5 TM, Landsat 8 OLI, Sentinel-2, and the SRTM version 3, the team will create a multitude of models to detect wild rice presence. The team will provide partners at the USDA ARS with distribution maps for northern wild rice and Texas wild rice populations. Partners at USDA ARS can apply the end products produced through this project to effectively enable strategic ecological planning, and apply more targeted field collections for species conservation.

Project Abstract:

Northern wild rice (Zizania palustris L.) and Texas wild rice (Zizania texana) provide valuable ecosystem services, food sources, and economic development to local populations in Minnesota and Texas. Research on crop wild relatives is imperative to understanding gene flow and genetic diversity of harvested species. The USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) is responsible for conserving the genetic diversity of valuable species, such as wild rice. However, this organization lacks insight as to the geographic distribution of Zizania populations. NASA Earth Observations, including Landsat 4 & 5 TM, Landsat 8 OLI, Sentinel-2, and the SRTM version 3, were used to create a multitude of models to detect wild rice presence. The team provided partners at the USDA ARS with distribution maps for northern wild rice and Texas wild rice populations. Partners at USDA ARS will apply the end products produced through this project to effectively enable strategic ecological planning, and apply more targeted field collections for species conservation.

Katie Walker:

Katie graduated from Boston University in 2017 with a B.A. in Environmental Science and a minor in Earth Science. She is most interested in the intersection of remote sensing, climate science, and ecology. She is excited to be working on the Minnesota and Texas Agriculture team with the NASA DEVELOP program, where she and her team will be investigating the feasibility of using remote sensing to map the distribution of crop wild relatives. This is her third term with the DEVELOP program, and she has previously worked as an ESL tutor and in the BU Ecological Forecasting Lab. In her free time she enjoys running and painting.

Dan Carver:

Dan completed his masters in Applied Geography and Geospatial Science from University of Colorado Denver in spring of 2017. Before that he had work with the United States Geological Survey, the Colorado Mountain Club, and Great Sand Dunes National Park in various roles involving science and education.  He received his undergraduate degree in Geology/Physical Geography from Adams State College. His interest include science education, systems theory, and geospatial method development. He is looking forward to the new partnership with the USDA and getting into the details of this excellent project.

Nick Whittemore:

Nick recently completed his second bachelor’s degree in geography with a specialization in Geographic Information Systems and a minor in Space Studies from the University of Colorado Boulder. His first bachelor’s degree was a general studies degree across the fields of biology, psychology, economics, business, and anthropology from the University of Southern Indiana. He also has two years of electrical and computer engineering technology experience from Purdue University. Before starting work with DEVELOP he worked as a satellite calibration technician with DigitalGlobe in Longmont, CO, and as a fire ecology research assistant in Nevada. There he was part of a team researching the effects of multiple wildfires on sagebrush landscapes, and the effects of invasive Bromus tectorum on the diversity of the sagebrush ecosystem. His research interests focus across many areas, but he is interested in using his GIS and technical skills to help small communities adapt to natural disasters and climate change. He dreams of combining all of his interests and skills to do community planning projects and assessments abroad in developing countries following natural disasters. In his free time he enjoys trail running, bicycling, local music, and road trips to national parks and unique landscapes.

Jillian Laroe:

Jillian will graduate from Colorado State University this spring of 2018 with a bachelor’s of Ecosystem Science and Sustainability. She hopes to pursue a graduate degree in Ecology this coming fall to study remote sensing applications in ecology. Concurrent to working with the Minnesota and Texas Agriculture team, she is working on undergraduate research to identify permanent agricultural dry-up in Northeast Colorado using remote sensing techniques. She was also with DEVELOP the previous term and has interned for the Geospatial Centroid through the ColoradoView program on the sustainable grazing project.