Ecological Dynamics of Coastal Plants, Birds, and Herbivores

Fatin Chowdhury ’20 In a recent paper, scientists from the University of Irvine examined the resistance of shrub plants to herbivory, as enabled by plant morphology or the presence of avian species. The scientists studied both direct and indirect defenses in nature and assessed these mechanisms in the context of energetic trade-offs. Characteristics that were already known to directly lower the success rate of herbivory … Continue reading Ecological Dynamics of Coastal Plants, Birds, and Herbivores

Invasive Hogweed Spreads Throughout North East

Rachel Kogan ‘19 Many plant species that are accidentally transported from one continent to the other by humans become invasive species. The Giant Hogweed, Heracleum mantegazzianum,is one such species. The plant, originally found in the Caucasus Mountains in central Asia, has recently spread throughout Canada and the United States’ Northeastern region. Recently, scientists discovered the hogweed in Virginia, following reports of unusual burns associated with … Continue reading Invasive Hogweed Spreads Throughout North East

Mudrocks and Plants: A Shared History

Gene Yang ‘19 Billions of years ago, during the Precambrian, mudrocks were considered a rare sedimentary deposit in rivers. Then, the colonization of land by plants coincided with an increase in mudrocks, resulting in a significant change in the composition of river sedimentary deposits. While this relationship between mudrocks and plants has been well-established, less is known quantitatively, and even less about why these two … Continue reading Mudrocks and Plants: A Shared History

Root Microbiomes Influence Plant Growth and DevelopmentRoot Microbiomes Influence Plant Growth and Development

By Meghan Bialt-DeCelie Image acquired from: http://www.the-scientist.com/images/January2013/microbe_infograph_full.jpg Figure 1: The community of microorganisms that live around and in the tissues of plants can affect the plant’s growth and development.   When thinking of ways to improve plant growth, one may think of relations between genetics, climate and available nutrition. However, Dr. Ulrich Mueller of the University of Texas and Dr. Joel Sachs of University of California … Continue reading Root Microbiomes Influence Plant Growth and DevelopmentRoot Microbiomes Influence Plant Growth and Development