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Kennesaw State researcher receives grant to review air pollution results in birds

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Kennesaw State researcher receives grant to review air pollution results in birds

Aug 29, 2022

Kennesaw State College assistant professor of biology Sarah Guindre-Parker has earned federal funding to increase her wide-ranging examine
of starlings to look at how the birds mirror the air pollution discovered of their habitats.

Kennesaw State researcher receives grant to review air pollution results in birds
Sarah Guindre-Parker

Guindre-Parker has earned a three-year $369,303 grant from the Nationwide Science Basis
to review heavy metallic concentrations in starlings, a standard hen discovered all through metro

“I am hoping to raised perceive how urbanization contributes to among the heavy metals which might be present in the environment,” she mentioned. “In cities, there are extra homes with lead paint, and we used to place lead in our gasoline, so theoretically all of that lead needs to be extra concentrated within the metropolis, but it surely’s unclear how that really performs out within the setting.”

Preliminary information signifies that starlings nesting at city websites have barely increased
lead concentrations of their techniques in comparison with starlings utilizing a rural nesting web site.
In accordance with Guindre-Parker, this data can provide even deeper insights into

“Starlings might function a pattern for the setting in a location as an alternative of us having to drive and pattern soil or water in least 20 completely different areas,” she mentioned. “Perhaps a starling might mixture all that data for us and be used to measure the degrees of pollution that people face in the identical zip code, which is what we hope to do below this grant.”

Along with the examine, the grant cash will permit Guindre-Parker to increase her
analysis crew with extra graduate and undergraduate researchers. She additionally plans to
add 10 subject examine websites across the Atlanta space, together with some websites in rural areas.
With these new websites, Guindre-Parker and her crew will contain native highschool science
college students and lecturers in soil sampling and different elements of the analysis.


“We’re hoping to go to close by colleges and train them a bit bit in regards to the work we do and train them about heavy metals — the place they’re discovered, what induced them to build up within the setting and what their results are on birds and people alike,” she mentioned. “We’re hoping to additionally pattern their schoolyards and make it possible for their soils are secure for them. So, I feel that is one other thrilling a part of the grant that may tie in properly to the analysis and the scholar coaching.”

Guindre-Parker mentioned Kennesaw State’s location on a border between city and rural areas makes it superb for this analysis, and for her analysis into starlings total. She famous that KSU attracts college students from each city and rural settings
in on this analysis, and a number of other professors and researchers within the School of Science and Arithmetic examine the consequences of urbanization on the setting.

“KSU is well-situated to sort out this kind of query and to be a front-runner on the subject of urbanization analysis,” she mentioned. “And it’s cool as a result of it additionally spans our pupil inhabitants, so it could draw extra individuals into the kind of analysis that we’re doing. Everybody can discover one thing attention-grabbing or related to their lives in that kind of analysis.”

The grant started Aug. 1 and funding runs by way of July 31, 2025.

– Dave Shelles
Images by Jason Getz

Associated Tales

A pacesetter in modern instructing and studying, Kennesaw State College gives undergraduate, graduate and doctoral levels to its practically 43,000 college students. With 11 schools on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the College System of Georgia. The college’s vibrant campus tradition, various inhabitants, sturdy world ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw college students from all through the nation and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral analysis establishment (R2), inserting it amongst an elite group of solely 6 % of U.S. schools and universities with an R1 or R2 standing. For extra data, go to

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