Browsing the archives for the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center tag

Nico Dauphine: A Different Kind of Community Service

The H. Carl Moultrie Courthouse, where the Superior Court of the District of Columbia is located. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons and AgnosticPreachersKid.
More than seven months after she was charged with attempted animal cruelty—and six weeks after her eventual conviction—former Smithsonian researcher Nico Dauphine was sentenced today to a $100 fine and 120 hours [...]

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Animal Wise Radio: Guilty Verdict in Nico Dauphine Trial

On yesterday’s Animal Wise Radio show, hosts Mike Fry and Beth Nelson and I discussed the guilty verdict handed down last week in Nico Dauphine’s attempted animal cruelty case, as well as the implications for future cat-related research at the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center and elsewhere.
If you missed it, you can check the complete show [...]

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Nico Dauphine Found Guilty of Attempted Animal Cruelty

The H. Carl Moultrie Courthouse, where the Superior Court of the District of Columbia is located. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons and AgnosticPreachersKid.
After more than five months of delays, Nico Dauphine was, this afternoon in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, found guilty of attempted animal cruelty. (Sentencing hearing is scheduled for November [...]

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Nico Dauphine on Trial (Day 3)

Testimony wrapped up Wednesday afternoon in Nico Dauphine’s attempted animal cruelty trial. Among the witnesses for the Defense: Peter Marra, Dauphine’s advisor at the Smithsonian’s Migratory Bird Center—who’s previously described TNR as “essentially cat hoarding without walls.” [1] Dauphine took the stand as well, and, as I understand it, did herself no favors career-wise (even [...]

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Jake and Lily

Over the past few months, I’ve heard from several people familiar with Nico Dauphine’s cat-trapping activities in and around Athens, GA, during her days as a PhD student at the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources. Three years ago, in Athens-Clarke County Magistrate Court, Dauphine referred to her roundups as “community service.”:
“Oh, I do [...]

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(Animal) Wise Guy II

My sincere thanks to Animal Wise Radio hosts Mike Fry and Beth Nelson for having me back on the show—this time to discuss the recent arrest of National Zoo researcher Nico Dauphine on charges of attempted animal cruelty and the Smithsonian’s subsequent reaction.
If you missed it, you can check out the complete show in podcast [...]

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Apocalypse Meow: A Brief Review

Although Nico Dauphine has yet to be suspended from her duties at the Smithsonian’s Migratory Bird Center, it seems all the attention she’s received over the past week-and-a-half is making life rather uncomfortable for her supporters.
Last week, the National Zoo removed Dauphine’s online application for recruiting field assistants from its Website; this week, the University [...]

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Friends with Benefits

According to their 2009 Annual Report (the most recent available), Friends Of the National Zoo raised $17.5M in “total support and revenue” during 2009. Of that, $1.4M went to the National Zoo and Smithsonian Institution. But FONZ support doesn’t end there.
Consider the response I received from a FONZ spokesperson when I inquired about their position [...]

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Perfectly Comfortable? I’m Not.

As many of you know, the National Zoo has shown no signs of suspending Nico Dauphine, despite her recent arrest on charges of attempted animal cruelty. As a result, at least two petitions are being circulated—one by Alley Cat Rescue, and another by Alley Cat Allies.
I encourage readers to sign both petitions, and also to [...]

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Nico Dauphine Update

Photo from an online application form Nico Dauphine was (until Tuesday) using to hire field assistants, whose duties include “assist[ing] citizen participants in deploying miniature collar-mounted cameras on their free-roaming pet domestic cats.”
Tuesday, while animal welfare organizations across the country were issuing statements condemning the alleged cruelty and urging justice in the case, Nico Dauphine’s [...]

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Predator-Prey Dynamics In an Urban Matrix

According to the Smithsonian’s Migratory Bird Center, Nico Dauphine’s “current project examines predator-prey dynamics in an urban matrix in collaboration with citizen scientists at Neighborhood Nestwatch.” But according to news stories coming out of the Washington, DC, area this evening, it seems Dauphine may have taken on the role of predator herself.
NBC reports: “Authorities say [...]

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Catbirds, Cats, and Scapegoats

A Gray Catbird in Madison, Wisconsin, USA. Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons and John Benson.
Once again, the Smithsonian has apparently put marketing (and perhaps politics, too) ahead of science, reviving a story first posted on the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center’s (SMBC) Website in October of last year (which has since been removed).

“Alarming number of fledgling, [...]

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A Tale of Two Cities

A Gray Catbird in Madison, Wisconsin, USA. Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons and John Benson.
According to its website, the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center is a “national and international leader in the biology and conservation of migratory birds.” When it comes to cats and their potential impact on birds, however, the SMBC apparently has a lot to [...]

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