Mark R. Welford

Mark R. Welford
University of Northern Iowa | UNI · Department of Geography

PhD University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

About

58
Publications
18,053
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422
Citations
Introduction
Mark Welford is a nature-society geographer and head of geography at the University of Northern Iowa. His research interests include: environmental change in, and conservation of, tropical montane environments; hurricanes and climate change; and the spatial dynamics of historical pandemics. He has also directed Study Abroad Trips to the Italy, Ecuador, India, the Czech Republic, Poland and Italy. He also runs bird trips for Ventures Birding .

Publications

Publications (58)
Book
Full-text available
The book attempts to synthesis our current understanding of the spatial and temporal dynamics of plague, Yersinia pestis, and its environmental, political, economic, and social impacts from Ancient Greece to the modern day. This book also explores the identity of plague DNA, its human mortality, and the source of ancient and modern plagues. Welford...
Book
Full-text available
This textbook explores the growing area of human-environment interaction. We live in the Anthropocene, an era dominated by humans, but also by the positive yet destructive environmental feedbacks that are poised to completely reset the relationships between nature and society. Modern and historic political, social, and cultural processes and physic...
Article
Full-text available
Since February 2020 the COVID-19 pandemic has been unfolding in the Arctic, placing many communities at risk due to their remoteness, limited healthcare options, underlying health issues and other compounding factors. Preliminary analysis of available COVID-19 data in the Arctic at the regional (subnational) level suggests COVID-19 infections and m...
Experiment Findings
Full-text available
Executive Summary The COVID-19 pandemic has increased the complexity of planning for hurricanes as social distancing is in direct conflict with human mobility and congregation. Researchers at the University of South Florida's School of Geosciences and College of Public Health, as well as collaborators from the University of Northern Iowa and the Lo...
Chapter
Comprehension of population patterns and processes is integral to any discussion of human-environment interactions, whether global in scope or at regional, urban, or more localized geographic scales. Indeed, with nearly 7.5 billion inhabitants of the earth, numbers remain a significant piece of the human-environment puzzle. Nevertheless, numbers al...
Article
Full-text available
This article focuses on the “second wave” of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Arctic and examines spatiotemporal patterns between July 2020 and January 2021. We analyse available COVID-19 data at the regional (subnational) level to elucidate patterns and typology of Arctic regions with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic. This article builds upon our prev...
Chapter
In 1950, a mere 30% of the world’s population was urbanized. By 2020, that number had climbed to over 55%, and projections indicate that by 2050 over two-thirds (approximately 68%) of the world’s residents will live in cities. In this chapter, urbanization is defined and applied to recent global environmental trends today and into the future. This...
Chapter
In 1972, The Limits to Growth predicted that by mid-twenty-first century, humans would face a critical resource and pollution crisis. Subsequent updates support the initial contention; however, when pushed to enact global environmental protections, we have only succeeded by decreasing CFC emissions, and thankfully, the ozone hole is now shrinking t...
Chapter
Since the mid-1990s, we have exceeded critical earth-atmospheric thresholds, and as a result, global warming can be identified in daily weather data! But climate change is not some esoteric issue; it is here and here to stay unless we radically alter our business-as-usual approach to resource consumption and pollution production. Sadly, there is no...
Chapter
Have human activities such as deforestation and urban sprawl, natural resource consumption, and pollution exceeded the capability of the planet to absorb these actions? It does appear that we have exceeded many critical environmental thresholds such as the ocean’s capacity to absorb CO2. As a result, record-breaking increases in local, regional, an...
Chapter
Although technological advances in food production have increased the total amount of food produced on earth, food insecurity remains a problem for over 800 million of the earth’s residents in 2018. In addition, these changes to food production create significant ecological footprints and oftentimes environmental degradation. This chapter examines...
Chapter
Until recently, animal and plant extinctions were limited to ocean islands. Sadly, extinctions now have arrived on continents, as human populations have rapidly grown, enormous areas of natural habitat converted to agricultural land, hunting for food and poaching for “fake” medicines and jewelry increased, introduction of alien species expanded, an...
Chapter
There are many actions we can take as individuals to reduce our global spatial, resource consumption, and pollution footprint! However, four high-impact actions (those actions that result in low emissions) that would substantially reduce individual annual carbon emissions are controversial. They necessitate we have one fewer children, live car-free...
Article
COVID-19 entered the US through ports of entry and spread to (sub)urban environments before expanding into the hinterlands. A similar pattern was noted in earlier pandemics, including the Black Death of the middle ages.
Article
Published in Medium - URL: https://medium.com/@brian.bossak/have-important-lessons-from-past-pandemics-been-forgotten-in-the-current-response-to-covid-19-7ace25d30e5c
Book
Geographies of Plague Pandemics synthesizes our current understanding of the spatial and temporal dynamics of plague, Yersinia pestis. The environmental, political, economic, and social impacts of the plague from Ancient Greece to the modern day are examined. Chapters explore the identity of plague DNA, its human mortality, and the source of ancien...
Chapter
Full-text available
North Atlantic hurricanes present the greatest recurring meteorological hazard along the southern and eastern shores of the USA. Since the late 1800s, in contrast to much of the Southeastern USA, the Georgia coast has experienced infrequent hurricane landfalls, particularly in recent decades. As a result, coastal storm preparedness complacency appe...
Article
Full-text available
Atlantic hurricanes, documented since the voyages of Christopher Columbus (Chenoweth 2006), present the greatest annual meteorological hazards of the southern and eastern shores of the U.S. Weather records, ship logs, diaries, and newspapers describe historical hurricanes from the early 18th century, but the official North Atlantic Basin hurricane...
Article
Full-text available
Neutron probe soil moisture measurements obtained biweekly during the growing season between 1982 and 1991 from multiple depths under grass-covered plots at 17 Illinois Climate Network sites are used to forecast crop yields. A Soil Moisture Index (SMIX) that combines the effect of intensity, duration, and timing of drought or excessively wet condit...
Article
Full-text available
https://journals.lww.com/epidem/Citation/2012/09001/P_128___Using_Location_Quotients_to_Predict.533.aspx
Article
Full-text available
With the unprecedented destruction of tropical habitats worldwide, there is a need for rapid ecological assessments of sites targeted for modified land use (Singer and Ehrlich, 1991 ; Sparrow et al., 1994; Ghazoul, 2002). In 1967, oil was discovered in eastern Ecuador. In order to export this oil, a 499 km long pipeline was constructed across the...
Article
Letters exchanged on role of Y. pestis in European plague Black Death. Our colleague and mentor David E. Davis researched and wrote in his retirement after years of research and reflection on rat ecology and rodent-borne diseases (3,4). Rattus rattus is commonly recognized as the vertebrate host of fl ea-borne plague that swept through Europe in th...
Article
Full-text available
To the Editor: A scientific debate with public health implications wages: What caused the medieval European plague epidemics known as Black Death? Recent articles note inconsistencies between a rat flea-borne pandemic of Yersinia pestis (the bacterium that causes bubonic plague) and the documented characteristics of Black Death (1, among others).
Article
Human-to-human transmissible pandemics, most notably the Medieval Black Death and Spanish Flu of 1918, have historically resulted in the world’s greatest mortality events. Today, as global transportation networks move people rapidly around the world, there are few barriers to emergent diseases. The mystery of the next great pandemic is not if, but...
Article
Recent research points to multiple inconsistencies regarding modern Yersinia pestis (in Bubonic, Pneumonic, or Septicemic Plague variants) as a causative agent for the Medieval Black Death (MBD). Published arguments at odds with a Y. pestis-caused epidemic include differences in recorded periodicity, seasonal mortality peaks, relevant biogeographic...
Article
Full-text available
Recent studies have noted myriad qualitative and quantitative inconsistencies between the medieval Black Death (and subsequent "plagues") and modern empirical Y. pestis plague data, most of which is derived from the Indian and Chinese plague outbreaks of A.D. 1900+/-15 years. Previous works have noted apparent differences in seasonal mortality peak...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Many migratory species of birds use SE Georgia during the nonbreeding season. However, different bird species favor different habitats and exhibit a wide range of occupation densities. Over the 2007-2008 winter we attempted to establish occupation preferences and the nonbreeding density of hermit thrushes in SE Georgia. Previous research in SE Geor...
Article
Recent research into the world's greatest recorded epidemic, the Medieval Black Death (MBD), has cast doubt on Bubonic Plague as the etiologic agent. Prior research has recently culminated in outstanding advances in our understanding of the spatio-temporal pattern of MBD mortality, and a characterization of the incubation, latent, infectious, and s...
Article
Full-text available
Landslides are common throughout the Ecuadorian Andes, but their causal and controlling factors and their roles in landform development have not yet been systematically investigated. This paper reports observations and hypotheses arising from a reconnaissance study of the Tandayapa Valley in the Cordillera Occidental, approximately 30km west of Qui...
Article
Full-text available
The Teaching Assistant (TA) system operating in the United States has both advantages and disadvantages to graduate students employed as TAs and undergraduates taught by these TAs. The system develops teaching and communication skills and broadens TA capability, understanding and marketability. Discussion and lab sections taught by TAs provide an a...
Article
Full-text available
Giant Cowbirds Molothrus oryzivorus are abundant in eastern Ecuador, but less common in the west 12 and are occasionally observed as high as 2,000 m 12. The species is considered a brood-host specialist: it parasitises seven cacique Cacicus and oropendola Psarocolius species 3,5,14 and has never, to our knowledge, parasitised any corvid. In contras...
Article
Full-text available
Summary Since the mid-1980s, exhausted pastures in Northwest Ecuador have been increasingly abandoned, allowing forest regeneration. At ~2200 m in the Tandayapa valley we surveyed four abandoned pastures in 1998 and again in 2001 to evaluate their use by birds. Each former pasture represented a different age of vegetation maturity. Observations in...
Article
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Hummingbirds are widely regarded as having few predators away from the nest. However, incidental attacks upon hummingbirds by a number of bird species have been reported and may exert at least a moderate selective pressure
Article
Full-text available
Since the mid-1980s, exhausted pastures in Ecuador have been increasingly abandoned, allowing forest regeneration. At approximately 2,200 m in the Tandayapa valley I surveyed four abandoned pastures to evaluate their use by birds. Each former pasture represented a different age of vegetation maturity. The number of bird species recorded in each suc...
Article
Full-text available
This study examines combined departments of geology and geography, a structure present at numerous four-year institutions, through a survey of department chairs and heads. We explore the reasons behind the combined department, the advantages, challenges, and disadvantages of the structure, and steps taken by chairs to promote the success of their m...
Article
Full-text available
Entre el 8 y 14 de agosto de 1997 se encontraron tres machos de Uropsalis segmentata cerca de la Reserva Bellavista, en la vieja ruta Nono–Mindo, bajo los 2.300 m, y una pareja fue encontrada a 1.950 m. Estos son los primeros registros en la ladera oeste de los Andes en Ecuador, y abajo de los niveles altitudinales registrados para la especie. Es p...
Article
Full-text available
Equilibrium is a single word that embraces multiple concepts. The largely qualitative use of equilibrium within geomorphology has fostered imprecision and even outright error; as a result the term, for many, has degenerated to the status of a non-corrigible regulative principle. Although a few geomorphologists make precise use of equilibria termino...
Article
This study investigates the fluvial dynamics of straight natural stream channels. In particular, this experimental field study quantitatively assesses a physically based non-linear mathematical theory of alternate bar formation under unsteady natural flow conditions within a straight alluvial stream. The study site is an artificially straightened s...
Article
Full-text available
Six experimentally derived formulae that predict the conditions for alternate bar formation and equilibrium bar dimensions are assessed using field data. The study site is an artificially straightened section of the Embarras River located approximately 16 km south of Champaign, Illinois. Data were collected on channel form, gradient, alternate bar...
Article
Full-text available
Research has focused on inter-relationships among fluid dynamics, sediment transport, bed morphology, and bank erosion; the goal is to develop a hydrodynamic explanation of meandering. The purposes of this paper are to review current hydrodynamic concepts related to meander initiation; and to provide direction for future geomorphologic investigatio...

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Projects

Projects (3)
Project
The goal of this project is address the three most pressing issues of our time: climate change, threshold exceedance, and the 6th mass extinction
Project
To increase our understanding of the impact of pathogen incubation periods on pandemic infectivity