School of Natural Resources and Environment

Conservation Ecology

controlling hay fever-triggering ragweed plants on Detroit vacant lots

ANN ARBOR—When it comes to controlling hay fever-triggering ragweed plants on Detroit vacant lots, occasional mowing is worse than no mowing at all, and promoting reforestation might be the best solution.

Those are the findings of a new University of Michigan study that surveyed vacant lots in several Detroit neighborhoods for ragweed, counting the number of ragweed plants and estimating how often each lot was mowed.

Adjunct associate professor and Leo intermittent lecturer

Educational Background: 

Ph.D. 2002.  The Ohio State University; Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology, Columbus, OH.  Dissertation Title: “Exploring mechanisms regulating recruitment of white crappie in Ohio reservoirs.”  

M.S. 1997.  Clemson University; Fisheries Biology, Clemson, SC.  Thesis title: “Diel movement of brown trout in a southern Appalachian river.”  

B.S. 1995.  Centre College, Magna cum laude; Biology, Danville, KY.

David “Bo” Bunnell has been a Research Fishery Biologist at the USGS Great Lakes Science Center in Ann Arbor, Michigan since 2004. He is most interested in food-web dynamics, particularly between fish and their prey and how those interactions are influenced by anthropogenic stressors, such as nonindigenous species and climate change. As an Adjunct Professor at the University of Michigan, he also enjoys teaching a Fisheries Science and Management seminar every other year.


USGS Great Lakes Science Center
1451 Green Road
Ann Arbor, Michigan  48105

(734) 214-9324

Featured in the April 27, 2014 Dana Digest

What is your degree and focus?
I am on the Conservation Ecology track focusing in aquatics.
What does your research focus on?

I chose Michigan because of its prestige and credibility.  The professors are well established in their and have a vested interest in the students and their sucess.  Also Michigans proximity to the Great Lakes and the many Great Lakes research facilities within Ann Arbor make it a central hub for aquatics research and allows for experience with lots of different organizations.  Michigans excellent and competitive athletic program adds to the excitment that Michigan has to offer.  

Entering year: 

When I came to visit day at SNRE I immediately knew this was where I wanted to pursue my graduate degree. The interdiciplinary focus of the program allowed me to integrate the social and natural sciences in my research questions. I like the more applied nature of the program, as compared to some of the Ecology and Evolutionary programs I also looked at. I appeciate the wonderful relationships I have made with other students and faculty during my time here. 

Harriet Morgan

SNRE's conservation ecology program is the reason I chose Michigan. This program offers the resources necessary for students to become excellent practitioners in conservation. The classroom and field based courses are taught by faculty who are experts in their field. While the conservation ecology program provides students with the opportunity to obtain an applied science degree, the interdisciplinary nature of SNRE allows students to interpret and tackle problems from a variety of different perspectives.  

Entering year: 

I chose SNRE because, having completed my undergraduate studies at the University of Michigan, I already knew the value of the education I would receive if I returned. I wanted to be a part of the unique SNRE program that would provide me with interdisciplinary opportunities and allow me to interact with a diverse array of knowledgeable faculty members and fellow students.

Kaleigh Fischer

I was interested in SNRE because of the awesome faculty and their participation in interdisciplinary approaches to environmental issues. I have the opportunity to study within my particular field while extending it across disciplines. This is very important in addressing environmental issues, particularly issues of food sovereignty. SNRE not only boasts this reputation, but truly embodies it.