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June 2008

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Sunday, June 1, 2008

Harvard Undergraduate Thesis on Garlic Mustard, an Invasive Plant

Dunbar Nathan Carpenter (Harvard '08) has completed his Senior Thesis in Biology, "Regional and Historical Influences on Exotic Plant Invasions - The Ecological Drivers of Garlic Mustard (Alliaria petiolata) Invasion in Western Massachusetts". This work draws upon research initiated in the Harvard Forest Summer Program investigating the ecological and historical factors driving the distribution of garlic mustard, a highly invasive plant.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

New Harvard Forest Publications: Nutrient Transformation and Bacterial Diversity in Pitcher Plants

In April's Ecology, former research assistant Jess Butler and her co-authors Nick Gotelli (University of Vermont) and Aaron Ellison (Harvard Forest Senior Ecologist) reported the surprising finding that the complex food web of macroinvertebrates inhabiting leaves of the pitcher plant Sarracenia purpurea contribute little to the nutrient budget of this carnivorous plant. Rather, bacteria provide the key link between the detritus-based ("brown") food web living in the pitchers and the producer-based ("green") food web that depends on the plant for food.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Interns Arrive for Summer Program in Ecology

Summer 2008 interns

Twenty-three summer students have arrived as part of the Harvard Forest summer research program in ecology. Students come from all over the United States to participate in on-going research projects investigating atmospheric pollution, global warming, invasive plants, watershed ecology, and insect outbreaks. Researchers come from many disciplines and institutions. Specific projects center on population and community ecology, plant physiology, insect ecology, land-use history, aquatic ecology, biogeochemistry, and atmosphere-biosphere exchanges. 

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Harvard Forest On The Air

Schoolyard Ecology Program Honored

Phenology studentThe Schoolyard Ecology program at Harvard Forest was featured on WBZ-TV in Boston and 3 of our Schoolyard Ecology teachers were honored at the State House for Excellence in Environmental Education. Tewksbury High School teacher, Elaine Senechal and her students along with Harvard Forest Ecologist John O'Keefe made an appearance on WBZ-TV with reporter Mish Michaels.