UTSA recognized as Certified Wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation
(Aug. 16, 2016) -- In recognition of its commitment to the preservation of Texas’ state insect, the monarch butterfly, The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) has been named a Certified Wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation (NWF).
In April UTSA President Ricardo Romo dedicated 6.8 acres of the UTSA Main Campus to the research and preservation of monarch butterflies. The top-tier research, led by Janis Bush, UTSA professor of environmental sciences, is the result of a $300,000 grant from Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar.
“I’m excited for our research, the environmental sciences program here at UTSA and especially our students,” Bush said. “I think the great benefit of certifying that area through the NWF helps us further solidify our commitment to maintaining that area to preserve and study monarch butterflies.”
For the past year UTSA faculty members and students have been conducting roadside surveys throughout the state to determine the prevalence of monarch larvae and eggs in Texas. Their results will help preservationists determine whether the monarch should be placed on the federal endangered species list.
“It’s very inspiring to observe the tremendous impact our environmental sciences team is having on the monarch butterfly habitat and the repeated honors they are receiving for their work,” said George Perry, Semmes Foundation Distinguished University Chair in Neurobiology and dean of the UTSA College of Sciences.
According to Bush, early estimates from northern wildlife organizations show the population of monarch butterflies may have tripled this year as a result of efforts to maintain their Texas breeding grounds. Since specific numbers won’t be available until they pass through Texas again in October to return to Mexico, Bush isn’t celebrating just yet.
“I think all of the attention that has been paid to the monarch butterfly over the last year is helping them begin to thrive again,” she said. “I’m very excited to see how they’ve progressed since they were last here.”
Until then, Bush is gearing up for another round of roadside surveys, which this year will stretch further out of central Texas into Eagle Pass and Laredo. She is also collaborating with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on a job fair to build a career pipeline for environmental sciences students.
“It’s exciting to see so many opportunities for our students,” Bush said. “It’s great to see them reaching for careers with the federal government that would allow them to influence decisions to protect our wildlife.”
Learn more about monarch butterfly research at UTSA.
Learn more about environmental sciences at UTSA.
The NSA Codebreaker Challenge provides students with a hands-on opportunity to develop their reverse-engineering, low-level code analysis skills while working on a realistic problem set centered around the NSA’s mission. Developer Eric Bryant will present a Tech Talk and answer questions about the challenge. Doors open at 2:30 p.m. Free pizza. Open to all.John Peace Library (JPL 4.04.22), Main Campus
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The UTSA Institute for Law and Public Affairs and the Southwest Association of Prelaw Advisors will host the annual Law School Fair for students interested in attending law school. Attendees will have the opportunity to meet with representatives from approximately 90 ABA approved law schools (including all law schools in Texas), and learn about admissions, financing, course offerings, student life, program reputation, with the opportunity to gain application fee waivers.H-E-B Student Union, Ballroom (HSU 1.104), Main Campus
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To prepare, graduation candidates should attend to obtain important information about the ceremony and life after UTSA. At the event, they can order their ceremonial cap and gown and other Commencement-related items as well as win prizes and capture lasting memories with fellow Roadrunners at a selfie station. UTSA ID Card required; no reservation needed.Buena Vista Street Building, Meeting Assembly Room (BVB 1.338), Downtown Campus
To prepare, graduation candidates should attend to obtain important information about the ceremony and life after UTSA. At the event, they can order their ceremonial cap and gown and other Commencement-related items as well as win prizes and capture lasting memories with fellow Roadrunners at a selfie station. UTSA ID Card required; no reservation needed.H-E-B Student Union, Ballrooms (HSU 1.104 and 1.106), Main Campus