Professor Emeritus Bernard L. Pollack (1920 – 2014)

Bernie Pollack on a visit to Cook Campus in 2008. Photo by Jack Rabin

Bernie Pollack on a visit to Cook Campus in 2008. Photo by Jack Rabin

Professor Emeritus of Plant Breeding and Genetics Bernard “Bernie” Pollack passed away on July 14, at the age of 94. Pollack joined Rutgers in 1960 as faculty in the Department of Horticulture and Forestry, and retired in 1985. While his work in vegetable breeding extended to eggplant, pepper, and tomatoes, Pollack is most renowned for his development of the Ramapo tomato, which, in the 1960s, offered New Jersey fresh market growers a tomato with quality, disease and crack resistance, and durability. As the popularity of this tomato never waned despite its disappearance from the market, during his retirement, Pollack assisted NJAES in bringing this variety back to market.

During the 1970s Pollack worked extensively with New Jersey growers doing vegetable variety trials and implementing trickle irrigation and plasticulture systems. Working with USAID and the Peace Corps, he travelled throughout Africa to further the development of trickle irrigation in African agriculture. During his travels, he collected eggplant germplasm and created one of the most extensive collections, containing 536 eggplant varieties. He worked on assessing exotic eggplant germplasm to develop valuable new traits for worldwide agriculture. [Read more...]

Death of Barnegat Bay can be reversed, Rutgers prof tells state lawmakers

For at least two decades, scientists have known that Barnegat Bay is dying and that an overabundance of nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus is what’s killing it. But what they haven’t known is how much of those nutrients the bay can accept without continuing that downward spiral. But a Rutgers University professor told a state legislative panel on Monday that he helped determine those limits and he urged lawmakers to take action on them to save the popular recreational and commercial waterway. "We have a lot of confidence in what we’ve done," Michael Kennish, professor of estuarine and marine ecology at Rutgers University told a joint meeting of Senate and Assembly environmental committees today in Toms River.

Read the entire article at NJ.com »

Cleanup finished at north end of Forsythe refuge, but work goes on in Stafford

A cleanup of Hurricane Sandy debris in the Edwin B. Forsythe Wildlife Refuge will extend into the fall after more debris was found than anticipated, officials said…Refuge Manager Virginia Rettig told the Press in May that chemicals found on the refuge include window cleaner, bleach, solvents, paints and stains, paint strippers, weed killers and insecticides. Mike Kennish a research professor for the Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences at Rutgers University cautioned against leaving these items in the refuge. Kennish warned that toxic substances and chemicals could infiltrate the food chain and kill marsh grasses, and organisms could pick up the substances and bring them into the salt marsh habitat.

Read the entire article at PressOfAtlanticCity.com »

Alumni Story: For Amanda Szucsik (Cook ’01), Working with Lab Animals Ignites a Dream

Amanda Szucsik with a Savannah Monitor Lizard, the main experimental model she studied in grad school.

Amanda Szucsik with a Savannah Monitor Lizard, the main experimental model she studied in grad school.

The Department of Animal Sciences invites alumni to share their stories as they pursue their work or interests after graduation. The following is adapted from a story written by Amanda Szucsik, Class of 2001.

My name is Amanda Szucsik.  I am 34 years old and was recently admitted (Class of 2018) to North Carolina State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. NCSU is the only veterinary school in the U.S. to offer a focused, tracking curriculum in laboratory animal medicine. I am very, very excited to begin this next chapter in my life and can hardly believe that this dream is finally coming true!

I am firmly committed to the pursuit of a specialty in laboratory animal medicine post-graduation. I never would have arrived at this juncture in my life had it not been for the Rutgers School of Environmental and Biological Sciences’ Department of Animal Sciences. [Read more...]

With Nuclear Weapons and Climate Change, Things Could Get Worse

There’s more bad news from the climate scientists. Not about global warming, where the news is never good, but about the impact nuclear weapons would have on the atmosphere, our climate, and food production if even a very small number were used in a limited, regional conflict…The basic narrative – a nuclear famine bombing run, if you will – has not changed much since 2007, when Brian Toon, Alan Robock (professor of environmental science at the Rutgers School of Biological and Environmental Sciences), and other experts in atmospheric science simulated the use of 100 Hiroshima-sized bombs over cities in India and Pakistan and found that enough soot and smoke would be injected into the upper atmosphere from the resulting firestorms to block sunlight from reaching substantial areas of the Earth’s surface for a decade or more.

Read the entire article at lasvegas.informermg.com »