November 28, 2017 4:00PM - 5:00PM
Matt Baker from the University of Maryland presents "Linking river valley flood regimes to floodplain forest composition and functional traits: contrasting flood dynamics and forest patterns in Michigan and Maryland."
Floodplain forests are known for their biodiversity and strong environmental gradients, yet most of our understanding of biotic response to such gradients comes from relatively simple characterizations of flood dynamics across space, often inferred from valley cross sections. We applied emerging geospatial modeling tools to characterize valley hydrologic dynamics in contrasting regional contexts and compare how flooding interacts with functional traits to drive patterns of biodiversity in floodplain ecosystems. We show that flood dynamics differ strongly with region and local physiography, altering the relative importance of specific traits and patterns of floodplain forest composition on otherwise similar landforms.
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