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Understanding Structure; Function of Ecological Systems Over Space & Time

Speaker: Dr. Angélica González, Assistant Professor, Department of Biology and Center for computational and Integrative Biology, Rutgers University

Energy and material harvesting are the most fundamental processes for living organisms. These harvesting processes occur in consumer–resource interactions, which provide the backbone of ecological and evolutionary dynamics as all organisms must acquire resources to survive and reproduce. In this talk, Dr. González will provide a broad overview of her research program, which focuses on how energy and matter constraint the structure and functioning of ecological systems. The first project she will discuss focuses on the effects of nitrogen and phosphorus deposition on the structure and function of aquatic ecosystems. She will also talk about the energetic and material costs of spider web-building processes and spider-prey interactions.

Finally, Dr. González will discuss how integrating paleoecological inference with isotope geochemistry can help understand the dynamics of ancient and modern food webs across temporal and spatial scales.

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