News & Eventscategory
Much of what we know about where carbon will be on the globe in 12, 25 or 100 years is due to innovative predictive modeling tools like the ones researcher Yiqi Luo develops at Northern Arizona University’s Center for Ecosystem Science and Society (Ecoss). The short course taught by Luo and nearly 30 students, staff, and faculty from NAU and other institutions, now in its second year, expanded to cover two new topics: ecological forecasting and data assimilation. Luo said his group expanded into these areas in order to make the course more useful for trainees working to improve their models’ predictions. Read the full article here
Girls code. In Flagstaff, thanks to the efforts of Ecoss/SICCS postdoc and club founder Katharyn Duffy. Check out this great Arizona Daily Sun story about the new Girls Who Code club in Northern Arizona and Duffy's plans for expanding the after-school club next year!
Taking Flux Puppy for a walk: Ecoss’ undergraduate research team develops new ecological app for measuring carbon dioxide
“Today I am taking the flux puppy for a walk at @HarvardForest to measure stem respiration,” NAU postdoctoral researcher Tim Rademacher recently tweeted. With it, a photo of a small white chamber fastened to a tree trunk (think half Dixie cup, half electrode) and hooked at the other end to a handheld tablet sporting a clear, clean graph of CO2 in parts per million. The wire between seems charged with symbolic heft: tying paper to its replacement, or connecting old methods to new. The question Rademacher’s tweet triggers—what’s a flux puppy?—arrives simultaneous to that wish all good marketing teams trade in: I don’t know what it is, but I want one. And thanks to its open-source code, anyone with access to a handheld Android or tablet who wants to measure flux—that is, how much carbon dioxide or water is respired...
Congratulations to Lissy Enright (MS, Biology) for winning 3rd place overall at the 3 Minute Research Presentation Southwest regionals this past weekend at the University of Nevada, Reno! Lissy advanced to the regionals by taking 3rd and Best Slide (in collaboration with Victor Leshyk) at the NAU 3MRP competition in March for her talk, The Redwood Test: How Much Are We Willing to Lose as the Climate Changes? Congratulations also to Julia Stuart (PhD, Biology) for being named a 2019-2020 NAU ARCS Foundation scholar! She and seven other NAU graduate student scientists received the award last week in Phoenix.
Andrew Richardson was named Regents' Professor at NAU, the highest rank a faculty member can achieve. Richardson studies forest science and ecophysiology and is a world-renowned expert in phenology, the study of seasonal rhythms of plants and animals in various ecosystems. Read more at NAU news See Richardson's full profile here
Ecoss graduate student Ali Martinez and a team of ecologists including her advisor Marks, Ecoss researchers Ben Koch and Zasha Welsh, Alex Flecker (Cornell University) and Steve Thomas (University of Nebraska) constructed a system of miniature streams whose temperatures Martinez can manipulate. The team studies how nutrients will move in the food chain of warming streams. The Arizona Daily Sun featured the experiment (nicknamed the Kraken) in a top story March 26, 2019. Read the full article here.
Doctoral candidate Elaine Pegoraro designed an experiment to measure how microbes respond to fresh carbon addition at different depths in soil collected from a field site near Healy, Alaska. Essentially, she made glucose additions to the soil three times throughout the course of a year. The results were published this month in Soil Biology and Biochemistry. Pegoraro’s findings suggest that plants may contribute to some soil carbon loss by releasing glucose from their roots into soil. Read the full NAU article here
Former Ecoss Postdoctoral researcher Natasja van Gestel, now at Texas Tech University, and Bruce Hungate and Paul Dijkstra from ECOSS are using deglaciated area in Antarctica to investigate plants and microbial responses to warming. Two graduate students will be integral to the success of the study: Kelly McMillen (Texas Tech University) and Alicia Purcell (ECOSS, Northern Arizona University). Over 90% of the glaciers on the western Antarctic Peninsula have retreated with current, unprecedented warming rates – warming rates here are more than 4 times faster compared to the global average. Why study here? The land ecosystems are far less complex in Antarctica compared to land areas elsewhere, thereby making Antarctic soils more tractable to test scientific hypotheses about the links between carbon balance and those who influence it: the plants and microbes. The scientists are implementing a warming experiment by...
Ecoss's Yiqi Luo and Andrew Richardson and Ecoss affiliate Greg Caporaso (Pathogen and Microbiome Institute) have been named as ‘Highly Cited Researchers’ in 2018 by Clarivate Analytics. The list, drawn from the top 1% of scientific citations over the last decade, offers a benchmark of researchers’ influence within and across 21 scientific fields. Richardson was recognized for his publications in Environment and Ecology as well as in Agriculture, Luo in Environment and Ecology, and Caporaso in Microbiology.