11 projects

2012 to 2017

Ecological change in large lakes affects the livelihoods of a large number of people. Food web dynamics is at the heart of these changes, as they affect fish and fisheries. We have developed methods to assess the lower trophic levels on which fish depend and are analyzing the effects of ecological change on the whole food web. We are since 2012 the main EPA grantee for monitoring the lower trophic levels of all five Great Lakes, from Superior to Ontario and share this information with managers in the US and Canada

2010 to 2018

Powdery mildews are a diverse group of fungi that attack important crops. Their ability to produce vast numbers of infectious spores is the driving force of epidemics. In a series of experiments, we found that certain types of light can shut down their development. In effect, we have taken an environmental cue that the fungus uses to "wake up" and turned it against itself.

2009 to 2012

The source of infection for strawberry powdery mildew was wrongly identified for decades. We found that minute structures called cleistothecia that were formerly thought to be non-functional were perpetuating the disease and causing epidemics. Finding this source of infection was the key to better control of the disease.


Members of our research group are collaborating with colleagues at the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse and at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station to determine incidence and severity of diseases affecting plantation-grown willows.


Dietary fiber concentration and digestibility are the main determinants of feed digestibility in ruminants. Understanding the mechanisms of digestion and passage kinetics is necessary to accurately predict digestibility and nutrient supply. This project aims to improve experimental techniques in estimating digestion and passage kinetic parameters and constructing a dynamic mechanistic model predicting fiber digestibility.


eClips is a digital database of 10,000 clips and more than 40 podcasts, focused on entrepreneurship, business, and leadership. The material is based on hundreds of in-depth interviews as well as business presentations. eClips makes it possible for business people (including small business owners and entrepreneurs), educators, and students to find targeted and focused information, because it is organized by entrepreneur, company, demographics, topics, and keywords.


This project is designed to increase our understanding of how microorganisms control the fate of nitrate, an important nutrient that has recently, through industrial activity, become a serious pollution problem.

2007 to 2012

We have developed standard operating procedures for hydroacoustic surveys in the Great Lakes that are now published through the Great Lakes Fisheries Commission. We are also developing teaching tools, a web site is online and operational (Acoustics unpacked), and have contributed a chapter in the American Fisheries Society's textbook on Fisheries Techniques. Standardization of techniques and a better appreciation for the uncertainties in this technique will increase its usefulness in the Great Lakes and elsewhere.


This project has improved the turfgrass industry's understanding of the proper use of potassium fertilizers. This work has had to overcome more than 50 years of prejudice toward the use of potassium fertilizer, and only after several studies and practitioners demonstrating the value of reducing applications has the industry begun to shift away from gratuitous use.


We showed that brook trout reproduction was reduced and occurred later in years with warmer summer temperatures in a lake at the southern edge of the range of lake-spawning brook trout. The delay and reduction in total spawning activity that we observed demonstrates substantial non-lethal and sub-lethal effects of warming climate conditions.