California Ecology and Conservation Course

The application deadline for the Summer 2019 offering of the UC Natural Reserve System field course, California Ecology and Conservation, is approaching! Applications can be found here and are due on February 5, 2018 so please spread the word!
This relatively new program, launched in Fall 2015, has been a tremendous success. Over 250 students from across the UC system have gained strong independent scientific research skills while immersed in the training grounds of the UC natural reserves, from Big Sur to the Mojave Desert, from coastal redwoods to California grasslands to high altitude bristlecone pines. Check out this video to get glimpses of what students are calling the most rewarding experience in their undergraduate careers.

Mary Power featured in Serengeti Documentary


Academy Award-winning Passion Pictures and HHMI Tangled Bank Studios present one of the most important but untold science stories of our time—a tale with profound implications for the fate of life on our planet. Beginning in the 1960s, a small band of young scientists headed out into the wilderness, driven by an insatiable curiosity about how nature works. Immersed in some of the most remote and spectacular places on Earth—from the majestic Serengeti to the Amazon jungle; from the Arctic Ocean to Pacific tide pools—they discovered a single set of rules that govern all life. 

The four living ecologists in the film (Jim Estes, Tony Sinclair, John Terborgh, and Mary Power) will be at the evening showing and will have a brief discussion and post film reception. 

Mary Power is the faculty director and an active researcher at the Angelo Reserve

The evening show is sold out, but at the time of posting, there are tickets available for a matinee showing.

Announcing the Simes Award for Field Work at Hastings

The William Simes Research Fund is a new opportunity that was established to honor the father of Frances Simes Hastings who, with her husband Russell, donated the land in Carmel Valley that would become the Hastings Reservation. William Simes was a successful New England merchant specializing in the importation of tea. His daughter Frances and her husband Russell lived in California for many years, purchasing land in Carmel Valley in 1929. Funding to establish the Simes Award was provided by the grandchildren of Frances and Russell in 2017.

Purpose: The Simes Fund is intended to support costs associated with an extended (e.g., several month) period of field research at Hastings. Appropriate uses include costs of housing, food, and other supplies required to conduct fieldwork.

Eligibility: The award is open to graduate students (Masters and Ph.D.) and postdoctoral researchers; pending available funds, applications from exceptional undergraduates will be considered. Any topic in organismal biology is appropriate. Projects in other science disciplines (e.g., geology, anthropology) will also be considered if they use study systems available at Hastings. The award is open to members of any accredited graduate program; applicants do not need to be students at UC Berkeley or other campuses in the UC system.

Award: Awards of up to $1500 will be made each year; the exact number of awards per year will depend upon available funding. The award will be paid directly to the recipient. After 1 year, the recipient will be expected to provide a short (1 page) report summarizing the activities conducted at Hastings using the award.

Download application material here: Hastings Simes Award and Application.

Deadline for applications: 1 December 2018


Now Accepting Applications for 2019 Baird Award

The Berkeley Natural History Field Stations invite applications for the “The Carol Baird Graduate Student Award for Field Research.” Awards will be granted to Berkeley graduate students to support high quality research that is carried out primarily in the field, based in or around Berkeley’s Natural History Field Stations:

Angelo Coast Range Reserve

Blue Oak Ranch Reserve

Hastings Natural History Reservation

Point Reyes Field Station

Sagehen Creek Field Station

The second competition will support field research beginning in 2019. Proposals of up to 5 pages (total), describing the project, its importance, and proposed methods and logistics, must be submitted electronically to by September 30, 2018 with “Carol Baird Graduate Student Award for Field Research” in the subject line. Awards of up to $22,000 will be made on the basis of merit. Funding may be requested for a single field season or multiple field seasons, and for work at or around a single or several reserves. Support allocations (amount per student, potential for renewal) are flexible, as long as the research is field-based, is of excellent quality, and is substantially improved by this support.   

Awardees will be selected by a faculty review committee comprised of the Directors of the UC Berkeley Natural History Field Stations, and will be announced on October 15, 2018.

Post Award obligations:

1) Awardees will be required to present their findings to the local community around the field station(s), for example at town meetings or at workshops organized by local conservation, educational, or citizen science groups.  

2) Each awardee must submit a report summarizing their research accomplishments to by 15 November of the year in which the award was received.  

3) By April 15 of the next year, a fuller report (with full analyses, photos, videos, links, etc.) should be sent to the same email address, Both reports will be evaluated by the faculty review committee, and forwarded to the funding Foundation.

Relevant dates for the 2018 competition:

September 30, 2018:

Applications for the 2019 awards must be received at

October 15, 2018:

Awards for 2019 will be announced.

November 15, 2019:

Reports from awardees due, submitted to with “Carol Baird Graduate Student Award for Field Research” in the subject line. Reports should describe research accomplishments based on the award, including scientific findings, publications, and reports, videos, and links to public workshops, lectures, or presentations.

April 15, 2020:

More complete reports, with manuscript drafts if available, data analyses, photos, videos, and other links should be sent to with “Carol Baird Graduate Student Award for Field Research” in the subject line.

Questions can be sent to