|Welcome to the Zanne Lab!
research focuses on ecological, evolutionary, and biogeographic
determinants of species distributions. We do this by measuring
physiological, morphological, and anatomical functional traits across
many species. We are located in the Department of Biological Sciences
at George Washington University.
welcome to 2015! Over the second half of 2014, we've focused on writing
grants for future projects and writing papers to wrap up past projects.
A number of us attended the annual Ecological Society of America
meetings in Sacramento, CA. We had various visitors including Oyomoare
and Simon Uribe-Convers (who will be working with Keith Crandall, Lucia Lohman,
and us on Bignoniaceae and microbial communities). We've had various
adventures including whitewater rafting on the American River, hiking
Old Rag in the Shenandoahs, and watching the blood red eclipse. We also
visited Cara Santelli
at the Department of Mineralogy at the National Museum of Natural
History. Cara gave us a backstage tour of the blue room! Brad and Amy Z
met up with Nathan English
and Alex Leotta from James Cook University in Townsville, QLD to core
live and dead oak trees around Tyson. Most recently, the lab has made
the shift to the new Science and Engineering Hall. We're sitting in
close proximity to many of our favorite ecology and evolution
colleagues and friends. Please note our new address on the Contact page
- and come visit!|
Brad got a job!!! In August, he will be relocating to Sarasota, Florida to start as an Assistant Professor at New College of Florida.
While there, he's looking forward to carrying the torch for the Zanne
lab and introducing many talented students to how wood traits influence
the carbon cycle in the classroom and the field. Also, look out for
publications from Brad on coarse woody debris movement, vessel length
estimation, diameter effects in decay, and tree fall dynamics across
the eastern US.
Amy Milo, with the help of our new undergraduate lab member, Abby
Carter, is in the process of wrapping up a first round of microcosm
experiments to determine how fungal respiration changes after fruiting
occurs. With one successful experiment under her belt, she's looking
forward to expanding to more species with a wider range of nutritional
modes. She is continuing to gather data about fungal fruiting phenology
at SERC and hopes to have sequencing data to look at fungal communities
in deadwood 4 years after whole tree harvesting from samples collected
in Minnesota and Wisconsin last summer. Amy will be attending NAFEW over the summer to participate in a symposium on the importance of deadwood in forest ecosystems.
|Last semester, Darcy worked with three GW undergraduate students,
Nicole Butler, Neeki Ahmadi, and Laura Bader, who made huge strides
toward completing datasets for leaf and fine branch mass loss and wood
acidity. Since then, Darcy has been preparing to sequence barcodes of
fungal and bacterial communities in the great variety of rotted wood we
collected from Tyson in summer 2014. We can't wait to compare the
microbial communities we find in our rotplots to those in the samples
we collected from naturally recruited coarse woody debris.
This semester, we welcome Abby Carter, a GW senior who spent last
semester studying tropical biology in Costa Rica, where she studied
predation on fungal fruiting bodies. Now Abby is helping Amy Milo with
her work on fungal microcosms.
While still focused on work in China, Luke is beginning to transfer
some work and more time back to the US so that he can spend more time
on GW's campus with the Zanne lab. Always looking for synergies, Luke
may try to figure out ohow root and mycorrhizal traits relate to wood
traits and decomposition. Look out for publications on improving
definitions and measurements of fine roots, relationships between
mycorrhizal fungi and soil carbon, and links between aboveground and
belowground plant tissues with detailed measures of spatial root
partitioning in a mixed forest in SE China.
Amy Z attended another of the SESYNC working groups on "Macroevolution of Ecosystem Services from Trees" led by Jeannine Cavender-Bares and Steve Polasky and got to work with Will Pearse afterward. Amy really enjoyed her recent trip to Indiana University where she was invited by Meghan Midgley in Rich Phillips's
lab to give a departmental seminar. She has been coordinating a special
issue of Journal of Ecology entitled "Whether in Life or in Dath: Fresh
Perspectives on How Plants Affect Biogeochemical Cycling" with Amy Austin. In fall semester, she taught Field Biology
for the first time in DC. The class visited 9 sites in the DC area with
12 local naturalists from across DC (including Darcy and Amy M). Field
Biology was a "green" course tied to the DC public transportation
system, an adventure of its own. This spring she is teaching her
Comparative Plant Structure and Function course. She is particularly
proud of Oyomoare and Brad, who have been finishing up projects in the
lab and finding jobs.