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U of M Raptor Center to celebrate 40 years, release rehabilitated birds Sept. 27

The Raptor Center at the University of Minnesota, Carpenter St. Croix Valley Nature Center, and the 3M Foundation will release rehabilitated birds back into the wild at this year’s Fall Raptor Release on Saturday, September 27 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The event will also mark a milestone in The Raptor’s Center 40th anniversary celebrations.

The free and public family event will take place rain or shine at the Carpenter-St. Croix Valley Nature Center, located at 12805 St. Croix Trail S., Hastings, Minn. Please note construction on County Road 21 and St. Croix Trail is ongoing and sections of traffic are single-lane.

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beyond-minnesota

U of M researcher works to prevent disease transmission in pumas

Minnesota may not seem like the obvious place for researching disease transmission and prevention among America’s large wild felids. But through collaborations with Colorado State University, the University of Tasmania, and state and federal agencies, the University of Minnesota will soon begin work studying six wild puma populations in California and Colorado, in addition to Florida’s endangered panther.

The work to study pathogens in puma populations is made possible through a new $2.14 million grant shared among the three institutions from the National Science Foundation.

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research-and-clinical-trials

Research Snapshot: Modeling how the flu moves through pig farms

Humans aren’t the only ones who can contract the flu.

Influenza A viruses can also affect pigs and their piglets, which is why, just like in human populations, pig populations are commonly vaccinated against the flu.

Last week, University of Minnesota researchers published a new model addressing how swine producers approach vaccinating their pigs.

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expert-perspectives

E. coli in our lakes: What does it really mean?

Editor’s note: This post originally appeared on the personal blog of University of Minnesota associate professor of biosciences Timothy Johnson, Ph.D.
Johnson’s research at the U of M College of Veterinary Medicine includes investigations into antibiotic resistance in bacterial pathogens, microbial communities in the animal gastrointestinal tract, and multidrug resistance of E. coli and Salmonella in both humans and animals.

If you follow the local news, or have children that love swimming, you have probably noticed an increasing number of beaches in Minnesota closed recently due to high E. coli levels. Just in Minneapolis, Lake Hiawatha Beach and Lake Calhoun’s Thomas and 32nd Street beaches were recently closed in response to high E. coli counts in the water. The simple phrase “E. coli” strikes fear into the hearts of anyone who has ever experienced gastrointestinal distress. However, it is important to understand what E. coli actually is and what “high E. coli levels” actually means to our lakes.

What is E. coliE. coli stands for Escherichia coli. This is the formal name for a species of bacteria in honor of the German-Austrian physician Theodor Escherich, who first identified the bacteria associated with digestion in infants. Here are the important take-home messages about E. coli:

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outreach

Coming soon: U of M Raptor Lab

Minnesota Environment and Natural Resource Trust Fund dollars begin supporting the development of a raptor-oriented, Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM)-focused curriculum for 7th and 8th graders today.

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beyond-minnesota

Is the biggest threat to wild cats … dogs? The research is in.

Big cat populations including the Amur tiger and Amur leopard are in jeopardy of extinction. Fewer than 550 Amur tigers and leopards remain in the wilderness of China and the Russian Far East today. Alongside threats posed by changing climates and human pressures, is another threat to cats that may sound familiar: dogs.

That’s right. A virus carried by the domestic dog may be one of the biggest threats to endangered wild felids like the Amur tiger.

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