2001 Graduate Laerm Award Winners
Karen E. Francl, Warnell School of Forest Resources, received funds to conduct research under the direction of Dr. Steven B. Castleberry. The funds will support her on-going small animal survey and habitat characterization of central Appalachian wetlands. Her field work focuses on bogs and fens in eastern and north-central West Virginia. Francl is examining vegetation structure, basic hydrology, and soil profiles in order to relate these characteristics to small animal communities. She requested funds to analyze 130 soil samples from her study sites in order to further characterize the wetland habitat. The Award will also enable Francl to present the results of her research at the 12th Annual Colloquium on Conservation of Mammals in the Southeastern United States.
Eva B. Gonzales, Department of Botany, is studying with Dr. James Hamrick. She requested funds to measure genetic diversity contained within populations of a rare plant species, Trillium reliquum. This is part of a larger study in which she will attempt to identify populations of this trillium that can be used as sources of material for restoration purposes. Combined genetic and demographic information will assist in the development of a comprehensive conservation plan for this rare plant. Gonzales will use the funds to conduct allozyme analysis of sampled populations using starch gel electrophoresis.
Thomas J. Pluckhahn, Department of Anthropology, is studying with Dr. Stephen Kowalewski. He requested support to establish a radiometric chronology of mound construction at Kolomoki. Kolomoki is one of the largest and most impressive Native American archaeological sites in the United States and is part of the Georgia State Park system. The results of this study will enhance interpretation of this important public site at Kolomoki Mounds State Historical Park as well as improve our understanding of human life in southwest Georgia. The Award will enable Pluckhahn to have two carbon samples from Kolomoki dated.