University of Sheffield EEE Seminar

Past week I had to present in the Ecology, Evolution & Environment (EEE) seminar series at the University of Sheffield. I was invited by a good friend Donatella Zona with whom I’m collaborating on some arctic research involving changes in snow melt dynamics and their influence on ecosystem productivity.

I had the pleasure to present an overview of past and current research, mostly dealing with vegetation phenology. It was a varied crowd so I glossed over some of the more intricate details. Comments afterwards were positive, suggesting that everyone understood my talk. The latter is key in talking to a broad audience, as you don’t want to lose half of the people before you are halfway through.

I also had a interesting chat with Gareth Phoenix on his arctic research and how camera based work might help him. We also discussed some of his research on the coupling of above- and below-ground turnover rates and carbon stocks to leaf area index (LAI) in arctic ecosystems1. This research, by Sloan et al., suggests that: “the coupling of leaf and root carbon stocks and turnover rates to LAI across plant communities allow estimates of fine root and leaf carbon pool size and cycling rates across heter-ogeneous Arctic landscapes, using just one readily remotely sensed parameter – LAI”. These results have important implications towards PhenoCam use in arctic ecosystems, given the strong relationship between LAI and and the greenness chromatic coordinate (Gcc).

(header image: fall colours in the peak district West of Sheffield)