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Kaysee presents at Entomological Society of America, Pacific Branch meeting

April 2021

Kaysee Arrowsmith presented her work at the EntoSA Pacific Branch meeting on spatial gradients and network rewiring! She presented data from the 2020 field season and showed that rewiring is predicted by pollinator community composition and abiotic variables, such as temperature and soil moisture, but not plant community composition or geography. Her preliminary findings suggest that geographic variation in interaction patterns is primarily driven by environmental variation between sites and altered competitive dynamics between pollinators for floral resources. Kaysee will collect more data on her spatial gradients project in the 2021 RMBL season. Great work, Kaysee!

RMBL team prepares for 2021 season

March 2021

Only 6 weeks until the Brosi Lab is back out at the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory! We had our first big team meeting this week, and we’re excited for the new folks who are joining us this year. UW undergraduate student Kyra Woytek and Northeastern undergraduate student Manogya Chandar are joining the team, in addition to entering PhD students Chris Anderson and Madeleine Strait. RMBL veterans Kaysee Arrowsmith, Therese Lamperty, and Annie Schiffer will be leading the team this season, along with Berry, who will be joining later in the summer.

Since the snowpack in Colorado was quite low this year, we anticipate that the snow will melt out earlier than normal. Kaysee and Therese will head out first in early May to set up sites and catch the few early pollinators, until the rest of the team arrives in early and mid-June. We’re looking forward to the 2021 RMBL season!

Therese’s paper accepted in Biotropica

March 2021

This week Therese Lamperty’s paper titled “Ecological drivers of intraspecific variation in seed dispersal services of a common neotropical palm” was accepted in the journal Biotropica! Her paper investigates the factors that may influence frugivore diversity and fruit removal at the level of individual plants. Her results suggest that seed dispersal services can be sensitive to fine-scale variation in habitat structure. Therese completed this work while she was a PhD student at Rice University and collected these data in the Chocó forest in Ecuador. Congrats Therese, and we look forward to reading it once it’s published!


Congrats and welcome Chris and Madeleine!

March 2021

Congratulations to Chris Anderson and Madeleine Strait for their acceptance to UW’s Biology PhD program, and welcome to the Brosi Lab! Chris and Madeleine received their offers two weeks ago, and made their decision official this week.

Chris has an evolutionary biology and computational background, and has a passion for fungal networks. During his time in the Brosi Lab, he hopes to study how ecological networks are constructed and how we can quantitatively measure these networks. Madeleine has a background in biology and neuroscience, and is very interested in species interactions, particularly those involving plants, in human-altered environments. She hopes to integrate fieldwork and wet lab techniques to understand how mutualisms change with anthropogenic disturbance.

We’re so excited for Chris and Madeleine to join us!

Brosi Lab members attend the Washington Botanical Symposium

March 2021

The Washington Botanical Symposium, hosted by the University of Washington Botanic Gardens and the Burke Museum, was held on Thursday, March 4th and featured presentations from botanists across the state. Annie Schiffer and undergraduate students Kyra Woytek and Christy Garrett attended the day of virtual talks and learned about the region’s plant communities. The symposium covered topics such as plant restoration strategies, climate change impacts on plant communities, and rare plants of the Pacific Northwest. Thanks to the organizers for such a great event!

Kaysee passes her qualifying exam with flying colors

February 2021

Kaysee Arrowsmith officially became a PhD candidate on Monday, when she passed her qualifying exam! For this exam, Kaysee presented her proposal on network rewiring and answered questions about the proposal and other ecology topics from her committee (Dr. Elli Theobald, Dr. Lauren Buckley, and Dr. Briana Abrahms). Her presentation covered network rewiring across spatial gradients, which she started at RMBL in 2019, and the effects of network rewiring on seed production in Delphinium barbeyi. Her hard work and many hours of reading paid off, and she passed without any reservations from her committee. Great job, Kaysee!

Loy successfully defends his dissertation!

February 2021

On Friday, Loy Xingwen successfully defended his dissertation titled “The effects of anthropogenic change on pollination in plant-pollinator communities” at Emory! He presented on the importance of pollination function, the impacts of bioenergy pine plantation management practices on bee communities, and species-dependent effects on plant fecundity in a community phenology manipulation experiment. Loy collected data at RMBL for the past few years, and he led the snowmelt manipulation experiment with Connor Morozumi.

When he graduates, Loy will work at the Atlanta Botanical Garden as the Conservation Ecology Coordinator. He has worked with the Garden for a few years now, and we’re excited that he’ll be close to our Emory and Atlanta friends. We’re so proud of you, Loy! Congrats!

Welcome back, Therese

January 2021

Dr. Therese Lamperty is back with the Brosi Lab as a postdoc! After completing her PhD at Rice University, Therese did a postdoc at the National University of Singapore, in collaboration with the University of Queensland. In the Brosi Lab, she is going to be working on ecological-networks questions, including expanding some of our work to seed dispersal networks, and integrating our network and molecular ecology components. Welcome to UW, Therese!

We moved to the University of Washington!

September 2020

This summer our lab moved from the Environmental Sciences Department at Emory University to the Biology Department at University of Washington. While 5th-year PhD students Loy Xingwen, Connor Morozumi, and Donna McDermott are still working at Emory for the remainder of their graduate program, Dr. Brosi, our lab manager Annie Schiffer, and 3rd-year PhD student Kaysee Arrowsmith headed west to Seattle. Laura Avila, one of the post-docs in our lab, also remains at Emory to continue her research and collaborate with Dr. Nicole Gerardo in the Biology Department. Meanwhile, our post-doc Tori Reynolds is working from the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory (RMBL) in Colorado.

The Brosi Lab is very excited about this new chapter at UW. We look forward to continuing collaboration with scientists at Emory and RMBL, while forming new connections at UW. Come visit us at the Life Sciences Building on the UW Seattle campus!

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 Blog

September 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!