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Students help remove invasive species

Dec. 12, 2012 — University of Delaware instructor Jacob Fooks wanted students in his Department of Applied Economics and Statistics sustainable development class to experience things beyond the classroom, so when the opportunity arose to assist Delaware Wild Lands, a nonprofit land conservancy, with an invasive species removal project, he jumped at the opportunity.

The UD students were assigned to work on a project at Delaware Wild Lands’ Sharp Farm near Odessa, said Fooks, who is a doctoral student in UD’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics.

The Sharp Farm provides a great learning experience for those unfamiliar with invasive species and their impacts on the ecosystem because such plants are prolific throughout the understories in the forested areas of the 430-acre property.

The farm -- owned for many years by the Sharp family, longtime UD benefactors, until its acquisition in 2006 by Delaware Wild Lands -- sits within two critical geographic transition zones in Delaware.