Environment

Legislative Hearing Scheduled
1:34 pm
Tue January 14, 2014

The Future of Stadium Woods

A 14-acre  stand of trees on the Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg recently escaped destruction when the University agreed not to build an athletic practice facility on that spot. 

Now a Virginia Senator wants to make protection of the parcel, known as Stadium Woods, permanent.

Senator John Edwards applauds Virginia Tech’s Board of Visitors for voting to save Stadium woods from development – for now. But he’s introduced a bill that would make protection permanent with a conservation easement on the land.

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VT's Freshwater Mollusk Conservation Center
4:41 pm
Tue January 7, 2014

Growing Mussels

Credit Virginia Tech

Forty years on, the Endangered Species Act continues to demonstrate its effects on a species native to this area; the fresh water mussel. 

You might say these shellfish do the heavy lifting when it comes to keeping waterways healthy. More strains of these living water filters grow in this region, than anywhere else in the world. 

The small buildings at Virginia Tech’s Freshwater Mollusk Conservation Center in Blacksburg seem more like a fishing village than a high tech research facility.

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Taking Stock after 40 Years
10:55 am
Thu January 2, 2014

Endangered Species Act

Credit Virginia Tech

The federal law protecting endangered species turned forty in 2013.  And that calls for taking stock of how it’s been working.  

Fresh Water mussels are at the foundation of aquatic life in inland waterways.  At different times in their life cycle, the burrow into river bottoms, keeping soil substrates aerated, and they act as powerful filtering systems that help keep the water clean. But they’re on the endangered species list, and anything that threatens them, also threatens our fresh surface water.

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Keeping Waterways Healthy
2:06 pm
Mon December 30, 2013

Stabilizing Threatened Species

December 2013 marked the 40th Birthday of the US Endangered Species Act …and in the decades since, many people have been working to get threatened species off the endangered list.

Scientists at Virginia Tech are making progress with a key species that helps keep area waterways alive and healthy.

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Environment
4:43 pm
Thu December 26, 2013

Wild Boars are Creating a Nuisance in Virginia

Virginia wildlife officials are dealing with a growing menace and don't quite know how to address it.  A feral hog population boom is prompting concern about its impact on the local ecology, agriculture, and human safety. Some residents may be to blame, while others may also be the solution.

Aaron Proctor with the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries says whether you refer to them as feral hogs, wild pigs, or wild boar:

And he says these animals have become a major nuisance and are popping up in areas where they shouldn't be.

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