Disentangling environmental drivers of rocky intertidal seaweed ecology

  • 9/26/2013 | 4:00 PM – 4:55 PM
  • Location: Druckenmiller Hall, Room 020
  • Event Type: Seminar

Disentangling environmental drivers of rocky intertidal seaweed ecologySarah L. Close, '06, Ph.D. Candidate, Department of Zoology, Oregon State University

My research focuses on how marine nearshore communities are shaped by the physical environment. In the California Current Large Marine Ecosystem coastal upwelling, bathymetry, and local factors interact to influence rocky intertidal communities in diverse ways and across different spatial scales. My research investigates the role of nutrients and light in marine macrophyte assemblage structure and function in order to further our understanding of how algal ecophysiology and nutritional ecology scale up to influence community dynamics. I approach this from a range of spatial scales, from small variations in tidal height on the order of meters, to large-scale variations in upwelling spanning hundreds of kilometers. Global climate change threatens to fundamentally alter physical patterns, such as temperature and pH, as well as processes, such as upwelling and sea level rise, in coastal oceans. Improving our understanding of the role these factors play in community dynamics is becoming increasingly important.