Congratulations, Annie!March 2020
Annie Schiffer defended her Honors thesis today, receiving highest honors. Her findings suggest that deviations in floral phenology impact plant reproductive success, but that this impact is species-dependent. Annie’s research included hand-pollinating over 250 individual plants twice a week, and monitoring more than 500 total plant individuals at the Rocky Mountain Biological Station in Gothic, Colorado. Her hard work in the field coupled with her elegant analysis of the data in R made for an incredibly strong body of research. Amazing work, Annie!
Welcome Back, Tori!October 2019
Tori Reynolds is returning to the lab as a post doc this semester! Tori previously worked in the lab in 2018 as a Fullbright Visiting Scholar. Tori has a PhD from the University of Queensland, Australia, where she worked with Prof. Margaret Mayfield to develop her thesis on “The role of wild pollinators in highly fragmented agricultural landscapes”. As a post-doc, Tori will continue to pursue her interests in developing current DNA metabarcoding practices, examining pollination networks in alpine communities that are impacted by climate change, and understanding the role of pollinators in mediating plant coexistence. Welcome, Tori; we’re glad to have you back in the lab!
Welcome, Therese & Melissa!September 2019
Melissa Caspary and Therese Lamperty are visiting the Brosi Lab this semester!
Melissa Caspary is an Associate Professor at Georgia-Gwinnett College who is on sabbatical with us this fall, and who joined us this summer at RMBL as a Research Fellow. Melissa’s research program focuses on isolated glade habitats in the southeastern US. Therese Lamperty is a PhD student at Rice University, and is joining us as an IQTM visiting fellow this semester. Therese was an Emory undergrad and was one of the first two undergrads Berry brought to RMBL!
Welcome Back, Beth!September 2019
Last week, Beth Morrison joined the Brosi Lab as a post-doc; Beth spent time with the Brosi Lab as an IQTM visiting fellow in 2018 and recently defended her PhD working with Rodolfo Dirzo at Stanford University. Beth’s research focuses on how species interactions play a role in the maintenance of biodiversity and how they are influenced by anthropogenic drivers. We’re so glad to have Beth back at the Brosi Lab!
Welcome, Luca!September 2019
Luca Szadovszky joins the Brosi Lab this semester as an EU Campus Mundi Fellow. Luca’s primary interests are in the field of palynology, especially in plant genetics, and she has recently completed her MSc. in plant science at Eötvös Loránd University in Hungary, where her research investigates the negative effects of climate change, land use change, and biological invasion. Welcome, Luca; we’re so happy to have you here!
Undergrad RMBL Article Featured on Emory BlogSeptember 2019
Annie Schiffer, an undergraduate honor’s student in the Brosi Lab, reflects on her field season at the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory in an article featured by Emory University’s Environmental Science blog. Annie explains that although “we occasionally encountered problems, such as getting our car stuck in a snowbank and losing tagged individuals to grazing cows” she collected valuable data, which she has taken back to the Brosi lab to analyze. She’ll use this data for her honor’s thesis. Learn about Annie’s fieldwork experience, her future plans, her passion for plant ecology, and her time at RMBL in her article. In Annie’s words:
“RMBL draws researchers in and makes them fall in love with the traditions, the mountains, and the culture…. After learning from a variety of scientists this summer, I have confirmed that plant ecology is my passion, and I hope to work with some of the amazing RMBL researchers in the future. ”
Congrats, Annie, on a fantastic field season and wonderful article!
Brosi Lab Wraps Up 2019 Field SeasonAugust 2019
We’ve entered our data, inventoried our lab, and packed our bags… the Brosi Lab is wrapping up at the Rocky Mountain Bio Lab and heading back to Emory! Berry and our wonderful field team, consisting of graduate students Loy, Connor, and Kaysee; Emory undergraduates Emma, Annie, and Caleb, along with recent Emory graduate Aiden and RMBL REU Ben; and visiting scientist Melissa, Northwestern grad student Amelia, lab manager Selena, and visiting team member Tori all worked together to make this field season phenomenal. We’re so grateful for the hard work everyone put into this field season, and are already looking forward to the next one!
Brosi Lab RMBL REU’s Present Summer ResearchAugust 2019
Both of our fantastic REU’s at the Rocky Mountain Bio Lab presented their summer research this month. Emma, an undergrad at Emory University, investigated the affects of early snowmelt; her preliminary results suggest that early snowmelt may increase the diet breadth of pollinators in terms of the number of flower species they visit. On the contrary, Ben, an undergrad at the University of Vermont, found that in a drought year, despite similarities in floral richness, pollinators visited fewer flower species.
Brosi Lab Heads to RMBL for Field SeasonMay 2019
Two PhD students in the Brosi Lab, Connor Morozumi and Loy Xingwen, left for the Rocky Mountain Biologic Lab this week. Connor and Loy will snowshoe into the field station from Crested Butte, where they will monitor snowmelt acceleration experiments and prepare for the field season. Lab Manager Selena Perrin will join Connor & Loy later in May. In June, they’ll be joined by PhD student Kaysee Arrowsmith and Northwestern PhD student Amelia Litz, along with Emory undergraduates Annie Schiffer, Emma Sharer, Caleb Sowers, recent Emory graduate Aiden Fife, and RMBL REU Ben Davis. Visiting Scientist Melissa Caspary, on sabbatical from Georgia Gwinnett College and returning teammate PhD candidate Tori Reynolds, visiting from the University of Queensland, Australia, and, of course, our very own Berry Brosi will also support the team at RMBL.
Congratulations, Kelly!March 2019
Congratulations to Kelly Endres! Kelly defended her Honors thesis today, receiving highest honors. Her findings show that scarlet gilia pollinators increase in variety during drought years, allowing the plants to exploit more pollinator species in hard times. Kelly demonstrated remarkable skill and patience with a very complex dataset. Way to go, Kelly!
Welcome, Selena!January 2019
Selena Perrin joins the Brosi Lab this month as our new Lab Manager. Selena is a recent graduate from Stanford University with a B.S. in Geologic and Environmental Science, and a Minor in Creative Writing. With a background in hydrology and martian analogues, Selena is excited to explore the intersections of microbiology, community ecology, and geology. We’re excited to have her in the lab!
Molecular Ecology Paper on Pollen Metabarcoding Now OnlineSeptember 2018
Our Molecular Ecology paper focused on pollen DNA metabarcoding is now online. Led by former post-doc Dr. Karen Bell, this is the first pollen metabarcoding paper to use known, carefully constructed pollen samples to rigorously assess the qualitative and quantitative performance of DNA metabarcoding. The take-home messages are that 1) pollen metabarcoding works in terms of identifying the presence of particular taxa in a sample; but 2) that pollen metabarcoding is not quantitative, that is, read counts are not necessarily related to the proportions of pollen grains in a sample.
Welcome, Laura, Kaysee, and Beth!September 2018
We welcomed Laura, Kaysee, and Beth to the lab in August! Dr. Laura Avila-Segura is a new post-doc who is part of the Emory FIRST post-doc program. Originally from Costa Rica, she completed her Ph.D. last year at the University of Florida. Kaysee Arrowsmith is a first-year Ph.D. student in the PBEE program. Kaysee is an NSF Fellow and 1 of just 14 recipients of the Woodruff Award from Emory’s Laney Graduate School, given annually to the top incoming graduate students across the University. She earned a BS in Environmental Sciences at UC-Berkeley (where she did her Honor’s thesis in Claire Kremen’s lab) and an MPP in Public Policy from Columbia, and worked in Lauren Ponisio’s lab at UC-Riverside before joining the Brosi Lab. Beth Morrison is a Ph.D. student and NSF Graduate Fellow in Rodolfo Dirzo’s lab at Stanford. She is visiting the Brosi lab for the fall semester as part of the QuanTM visiting fellows program. Beth’s doctoral work is focused on how agricultural land use intensification alters pollination and herbivory networks, with field sites in the Salinas Valley. She will work with Berry and others in the lab on ecological network analyses.
Good-Bye, Tori!August 2018
Tori Reynolds has completed her Fulbright visiting scholar position with the Brosi Lab and is now back in Australia (just after finishing The Bee Course in Arizona), where she is finishing her Ph.D. in Margie Mayfield’s lab at the University of Queensland. We miss Tori already! We look forward to having her back in the lab for a couple of weeks in October / November.
NSF Grant Funded!July 2018
In collaboration with Fernanda Valdovinos (University of Michigan) we were awarded a RAPID grant from the NSF’s Population and Community Ecology Cluster to study the effects of severe drought on pollination networks at the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory! Our approach tightly integrates theory and empirical data to understand how interactions “rewire” when biological communities experience strong perturbations.