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Environmental Heterogeneity, Diversity, and Dynamics of Tropical Forests

Speaker: Dr. Robert Muscarella, Uppsala University

Understanding how various sources of environmental heterogeneity (community structure) affect the dynamics of ecological communities is a key goal in ecology. In highly diverse communities, such as tropical forests, characterizing similarities and differences across species in their responses to various sources of heterogeneity can help us understand potential consequences of future environmental change.

Dr. Muscarella will present results from several studies of forests in Puerto Rico that examine how various sources of environmental heterogeneity mediate patterns of diversity and forest dynamics across a range of spatial and temporal scales. By merging data from demographic censuses, wood anatomy, and species traits, the work presented will outline an understanding of the key environmental drivers of forest dynamics in this system.