Facilities and Collaborations

The University of New Orleans and Audubon Nature Institute have launched a collaborative venture aimed at addressing some of the most pressing research topics in wildlife conservation and professional training in the field of wildlife management. Four faculty were named endowed chairs and will work with UNO graduate and undergraduate fellows on projects related to topics in wildlife sustainability in threatened ecosystems and zoo populations. The Sustainable Wildlife Fellowship/Internship program is made possible by the combination of UNO faculty expertise, Audubon Nature Institute facilities and personnel, and financial support from a Board of Regents endowment program.

Several faculty members are associated with the UNO Pontchartrain Institute for Environmental Sciences, a partnership of scientists and educators that combines rigorous scientific analysis with education, outreach, and planning to develop practical solutions to environmental challenges in the Pontchartrain Basin, the Gulf of Mexico, and similar coastal ecosystems. The Institute brings together the technical expertise and understanding needed to address issues such as water quality, critical habitats, biodiversity and coastal restoration strategies from departments throughout the University of New Orleans. Additional personnel include environmental and civil engineers as well as social scientists.

Faculty and students also have access to the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium (LUMCON), which was formed in 1979 to coordinate and stimulate Louisiana's activities in marine research and education. LUMCON provides coastal laboratory facilities to Louisiana universities and conducts research and educational programs in the marine sciences. The LUMCON W. J. DeFelice Marine Center is located in Cocodrie, La., approximately 85 miles southwest of New Orleans. This site provides ready access to the most productive estuaries in the United States, including, vast salt, brackish and freshwater marshes, barrier islands and offshore environments of the northern Gulf of Mexico.

Various faculty members conduct their research at field sites in Southeastern United States, Mexico, Central and South America, and Africa. The integrative biology program also benefits from collaborations with faculty from other departments with research in related areas, such as coastal wetland loss (Earth and Environmental Sciences), environmental policy (Department of Sociology) and spatial imaging analysis (Urban Planning).

Besides faculty laboratories, there are many resources available to students. The W.M. Keck Conservation and Molecular Genetics Laboratory in the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of New Orleans is a shared facility that offers access to instrumentation for research, education and technical services to in-house and outside researchers and students. Greenhouses are also available on campus.