North American Duck Symposium and Workshop

Plenary Speakers & Featured Morning Sessions

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Morning Featured Session: Celebrating 100 Years of Waterfowl Research and Management since the Migratory Bird Treaty – History and Science Guiding Us Forward
Organizer: David Trauger

Plenary Speaker 1: Dan Ashe, Director U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, "Reflections on 100 years of waterfowl management for the Fish and Wildlife Service"

Plenary Speakers 2: Jerome R. Serie, US Fish and Wildlife Service (Retired), Robert J Blohm, US Fish and Wildlife Service (Retired), and David E. Sharp, US Fish and Wildlife Service (Retired) "The Migratory Bird Treaty – Legacy and Foundation for Waterfowl Management"

Dan AsheDan Ashe

Daniel M. Ashe is currently the 16th Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. His appointment by President Obama is the culmination of a lifetime spent within the Fish and Wildlife Service family. Prior to his appointment as Director, Ashe served as the Service’s Deputy Director for Policy beginning in 2009, where he provided strategic program direction and developed policy and guidance to support and promote program development and fulfill the Service mission. Ashe also served as the Science Advisor to the Director of the Fish and Wildlife Service between 2003-2009 where he advised the Service Director and provided leadership on science policy and scientific applications to resource management.  From 1998-2003, Ashe served as the Chief of the National Wildlife Refuge System, directing operation and management of the 150 million-acre National Wildlife Refuge System, and the Service’s land acquisition program.  Ashe also led the Service’s migratory bird management and North American wetlands conservation programs from 1998-2000, contributing to significant advances in both programs’ impact and effectiveness. From 1995-1998, Ashe served as the Fish and Wildlife Service’s Assistant Director for External Affairs, where he directed the agency’s programs in legislative, public, and Native American affairs, research coordination, and state grants-in-aid.

Bob and Jerry Small


Jerry Serie and Bob Blohm

Jerry Serie, retired, US Fish and Wildlife Service

Jerry is a native of Minnesota where he acquired his passion for hunting, fishing, and trapping at an early age.  He has a MS degree in Zoology from North Dakota State University and a BS in Biology from St. Cloud State University, MN. 

Jerry began his career with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as a Research Biologist studying the breeding biology and migration ecology of the canvasback at the Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center, Jamestown, ND, from 1971 to 1983.  In 1984, he moved to the east coast to serve as the Atlantic Flyway Representative with the Division of Migratory Bird Management, Laurel, MD.  In this position he provided liaison between the Service and the Atlantic Flyway Council regarding migratory bird management and research.   He actively promoted the development of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan, and specifically the Black Duck Joint Venture. 

Jerry retired from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as a Wildlife Biologist in 2007 with 35 years of service working on migratory birds.  He currently resides in Easton, MD, where he continues an active outdoor life, including hunting, training retrievers, and a new challenge of landscape painting.

Bob Blohm,  retired, US Fish and Wildlife Service

Bob Blohm has had a longstanding interest in migratory birds, particularly waterfowl, after growing up along Saginaw Bay in the State of Michigan.  He graduated from Michigan State University with a B.S. degree in Fisheries and Wildlife and received his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Wisconsin, studying the breeding ecology of the Gadwall in southern Manitoba. 

Following graduate work, he was hired by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as a staff biologist in the Office of Migratory Bird Management, in Laurel, Maryland.  Bob remained in the Office (now Division) of Migratory Bird Management for his entire career and served in numerous capacities, including Chief of the Division of Migratory Bird Management.  He retired from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on December 31, 2010, after working nearly 32 years in the field of migratory bird management.  Since retiring, Bob has thoroughly enjoyed the daily challenges of trying to keep up with his ever-growing "bucket list" of things he wants to do.



Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Featured Morning Session: Strengthening the Links Between Waterfowl Research and Management

Organizer: Tony Roberts

Plenary Speaker 1: B. Ken Williams, "Prospects for the Integration of Waterfowl Science and Management"

Plenary Speaker 2: James Nichols, "Adaptive Waterfowl Harvest Management: Where Are We and How Did We Get Here?"

Ken WilliamsB. Ken Williams

B. Ken Williams is the Executive Director of The Wildlife Society, a position he has held since 2013 after serving as Chief of the Cooperative Research Units within the U.S. Geological Survey. He was also co-director of the USGS Science and Decisions Center, where he focused on adaptive management, valuation of ecosystem services, and advancing the use of science in natural-resources decision making. Ken holds MS degrees in mathematics from the University of Oklahoma and statistics from Colorado State University, and a Ph.D. in rangeland ecology from Colorado State. He also held science and management positions at the USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center in Maryland, the Office of Migratory Bird Management for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), the Vermont Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, and FWS’s North American Waterfowl and Wetlands Office.

Jim Nichols

Jim Nichols

Jim Nichols is a senior scientist emeritus with the U.S. Geological Survey. His interests include both research and management. He graduated from Wake Forest University in 1971 with his bachelor's of science. He then finished his Master's degree at Louisiana State University 1973 followed by a Ph.D under Dr. Walt Conley in 1976, both in the general area of quantitative Ecology. He subsequently began his career at USGS, and recently retired with the title of Senior Scientist, one of only 40 such positions in the Department of the Interior. His work has focused on the ecology and management of animal populations.



Thursday, February 4, 2016

Featured Morning Session: Integrated Population Models to Inform Waterfowl Ecology and Conservation

Organizers: Todd Arnold and David Koons

Plenary Speaker 1: Robert Clark, "Using population models to test ecological hypotheses and guide conservation decisions"

Plenary Speaker 2: Michael Schaub, "Inference about population processes by combining counts and demographic data using integrated population models"

Robert Clark

Robert Clark

Bob Clark is a Research Scientist with Environment Canada, and an Adjunct Professor in Biology at the University of Saskatchewan, Canada. Bob has worked at the interface of waterfowl ecology and management for more than 25 years, studying demography, habitat selection and life-histories of diverse duck species, and integrating relevant information about their ecology into large-scale management programs. Recently, Bob’s research group has been focusing on factors influencing the demography and management of species of conservation concern in N.A., particularly northern pintail and lesser scaup, and on problems ranging from discerning fine-scale effects of individual physiology on components of fitness to assessing large-scale impacts of climate variability on population dynamics.


Michael Schaub

Michael Schaub

Michael's talk is "Inference about population processes by combining counts and demographic data using integrated population models”. Michael is a Research Scientist and head of the ecology department at the Swiss Ornithological Institute (Die Schweizerische Vogelwarte) in Sempach, Switzerland. Michael has worked at the interface between avian ecology and conservation for 20 years studying migration, farmland bird-habitat associations, conservation, dispersal, life history trade-offs, capture-recapture methods, population dynamics, and Bayesian inference. Michael has also been at the forefront of developing ‘integrated population models’ to address ecological questions and conservation problems. Recently, Marc Kéry and Michael co-authored the book entitled “Bayesian population analysis using WinBUGS: A hierarchical perspective.” This book, and their series of workshops providing hands-on teachings from the book, have revolutionized the practice of Bayesian demographic methods by ecologists and wildlife biologists across the globe.


Friday, February 5, 2016

Featured Morning Session: Implementing the 2012 NAWMP Revisions: Management Decisions to Integrate Multiple Objectives at Varying Time Scales

Organizer: Dale Humburg

Plenary Speaker 1: Mike Anderson, "From Coherence to Integration: Challenges of Multiple Scales, Decision Authorities and Processes"

Plenary Speaker 2: David C. Fulton, "Values translated into objectives: Engaging waterfowl stakeholders"

Plenary Speaker 3: Fred Johnson* and Dale Humberg, "Multi-Level Learning in Waterfowl Conservation"

Mike Anderson

Mike Anderson

Mike is Emeritus Scientist for Ducks Unlimited Canada after serving 23 years as Senior Conservation Advisor and earlier as Director of DUC’s Institute for Wetland and Waterfowl Research, which he helped found. Previously Mike spent 18 years at Delta Waterfowl and Wetlands Research Station, last serving there as Scientific Director.  Mike grew up in Fort Ransom, ND. He received B.S. and M.S. degrees in wildlife biology from Colorado State University and Utah State University, respectively, and a Ph.D. in ecology, evolution and behavior from the University of Minnesota. He has been involved in waterfowl research, primarily on the Canadian prairies, since 1972.  His two largest projects were a long-term study of Canvasback ecology, behavior and demography (1975-1990) and the Prairie Habitat Joint Venture assessment study (1991-2000). Mike has been deeply involved in the North American Waterfowl Management Plan since 1986, mostly with scientific matters. Currently he serves on the Plan Committee and other groups charged with implementing the 2012 NAWMP Revision.


David Fulton

David C. Fulton

Dr. David C. Fulton is a U.S. Geological Survey research scientist (October 1998).  He is Assistant Unit Leader in the Minnesota Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit and Full Professor in the Department of Fisheries, Wildlife and Conservation Biology at the University of Minnesota.  His research is specifically focused on understanding the antecedents and influence of human values, attitudes and norms on decisions concerning natural resources and environmental management, modeling human choices and behaviors concerning natural resource use and management, and most of his research is conducted in close coordination with state and federal natural resource management agencies.  He has published numerous peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on this topic.  He obtained a B.S. in Sociology/Psychology from Texas A&M University (1987), an M.S. in Environmental Science & Regional Planning from Washington State University (1992), and a Ph.D. in Human Dimensions of Natural Resources from Colorado State University (1996).


Fred JohnsonFred A. Johnson

Fred is a Research Wildlife Biologist with the U.S. Geological Survey in the Southeast Ecological Science Center. Fred’s waterfowl career also included waterfowl management coordinator with the Florida Game and Fresh Water Fish Commission and wildlife biologist within the Division of Migratory Bird Management of the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service where he was instrumental in the successful development and implementation of the Adaptive Harvest Management program. He received B.S. and M.S. degrees from West Virginia and Texas A&M universities, respectively and Ph. D in wildlife ecology and conservation from University of Florida.  His principal interest is in the application of decision science to problems in natural resource management.  Such applications require a multi-disciplinary approach to engage stakeholders in the decision-making process, to predict the responses of ecological systems to controlled and uncontrolled drivers, to elicit societal values regarding the consequences of management policy, and to develop monitoring programs to compare predicted and actual system behaviors.  Fred is particularly active in migratory bird management, with experience in problems of recreational and subsistence harvest, pest control, and habitat management.  His scientific expertise is mostly in the areas of population ecology, statistical inference, dynamic systems modeling, and optimal decision making.





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