Event Calendar

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April 2018

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Investigating Multiple Trophic Levels in Arctic Alaska: Plants, Bugs, Birds and Small Mammals

Investigating Multiple Trophic Levels in Arctic Alaska: Plants, Bugs, Birds and Small Mammals

Thursday, April 5, 2018 - 11:00am - 12:00pm
Event Location
Schmidt Conference Center

Speaker: Laura Gough, Towson University

Pre-registration Required
No

Event Details

As the Arctic continues to respond to climate warming, interactions among plants, soil microbes and consumers may be changing and affecting ecosystem-level processes. Recent projects have focused on understanding the relationships between tundra plant communities and arthropods as well as vertebrates. This talk will highlight results from several studies, including how arthropods and migratory songbirds are affected by changing vegetation associated with climate warming, how arthropods respond to several decades of experimental soil nutrient addition, and how two tundra communities are affected by mammalian herbivory and nutrient availability. Dr. Gough will also explore a newly funded project focused on the role of microtine rodents in tundra carbon and nitrogen cycling will. This simultaneous bottom-up and top-down approach provides important insights into the ecological relationships among these organisms and fosters improved predictions of the effects of climate warming on the Arctic.

Our Thursday science seminars are free and open to the public. Because they are directed towards a scientific audience, they are more technical than our evening lectures. Visit our Evening Lecture Page to learn more about our free Bay Optimism evening lecture series.

11:00AM - 12:00PM
 
 
 
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Are wetlands carbon sinks or sources?

Are wetlands carbon sinks or sources?

Thursday, April 12, 2018 - 11:00am - 12:00pm
Event Location
Mathias Lab, Room 1013

Examining factors that influence soil carbon storage and transformation in freshwater wetland soils.

Speaker: Christine Maietta (University of Maryland)

Pre-registration Required
No

Event Details

Summary: Freshwater wetlands provide several essential ecosystem functions, including capturing, transforming, and preserving carbon in their soils. These habitats, however, are also the largest natural terrestrial source of the potent greenhouse gas methane. The processes that govern freshwater wetlands' soil carbon sink-source dynamics are strongly influenced by the soil environment, site history, and the composition and activity of the microbial community. This talk will summarize results from a project exploring how these factors shaped soil carbon cycling in natural and restored tidal freshwater wetlands. I will present evidence that suggests stabilization of microbial decomposition byproducts inside soil aggregates may help facilitate long-term carbon storage. I will also examine how wetland restoration, particular shifts in soil texture, influences soil microbial community structure and heterotrophic decomposition processes. And lastly, I will present preliminary results from a new project exploring linkages between methane cycling microorganisms (i.e., methanogens and methanotrophs) and methane emission from Delmarva bay wetland complexes.

Our Thursday science seminars are free and open to the public. Because they are directed towards a scientific audience, they are more technical than our evening lectures. Visit our Evening Lecture Page to learn more about our free Bay Optimism evening lecture series.

11:00AM - 12:00PM
 
 
 
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Protecting Pollinators: A Natural History Approach

Protecting Pollinators: A Natural History Approach

Tuesday, April 17, 2018 - 7:00pm - 8:00pm
Event Location
Schmidt Conference Center

Speaker: Gary Krupnick, Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History

Pre-registration Required
No

Event Details

Get inspired by stories of Bay Optimism this year! Learn what's working in conservation in the Chesapeake and around the world, and how we can do more of it. SERC's monthly Bay Optimism lectures run every third Tuesday of the month, March through October. Lectures start at 7pm; light refreshments at 6:30. Free and open to all—curiosity is the only prerequisite.

April Lecture:
Pollinators like bees and butterflies are critical to our nation’s economy, food security, and environmental health. But many pollinators are in serious decline. In this talk, Smithsonian botanist Gary Krupnick will provide insight into current efforts at reducing the continued loss of pollinator populations. He will also highlight the development of a national strategy that government agencies and private organizations are currently implementing to rescue them from the brink.

View more upcoming Bay Optimism lectures

7:00PM - 8:00PM
 
 
Declining oxygen in the world’s oceans and coastal systems: Science, policy and why it's hard to understand the big picture

Declining oxygen in the world’s oceans and coastal systems: Science, policy and why it's hard to understand the big picture

Thursday, April 19, 2018 - 11:00am - 12:00pm
Event Location
Schmidt Conference Center

Speaker: Denise Breitburg (Smithsonian Environmental Research Center)

Pre-registration Required
No

Event Details

Our Thursday science seminars are free and open to the public. Because they are directed towards a scientific audience, they are more technical than our evening lectures. Visit our Evening Lecture Page to learn more about our free Bay Optimism evening lecture series.

Summary: Since the middle of the 20th century, over 500 coastal systems have reported hypoxia (oxygen low enough to affect physiological and ecological processes) related to increasing anthropogenic nutrient loads. Over the same time period, the spatial extent and severity of oxygen depletion in both the global ocean and coastal waters has increased as a result of rising global temperatures caused by greenhouse gas emissions. Animals require more oxygen as temperatures rise and it becomes scarcer in their aquatic environments. In addition, because the main mechanism of oxygen decline is respiration, CO2 is released as oxygen is consumed, and hypoxia and acidification co-occur. Understanding effects of oxygen decline at scales ranging from the individual to fisheries stocks and food webs, and at time scales ranging from short-term exposures to evolutionary scales, is a challenge. But there are opportunities to highlight the problem and to inform policy both locally and internationally.

 

11:00AM - 12:00PM
 
 
 
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Do Brood Chambers Prepare Young for Tomorrow's Acidic Oceans and Estuaries?

Do Brood Chambers Prepare Young for Tomorrow's Acidic Oceans and Estuaries?

Thursday, April 26, 2018 - 11:00am - 12:00pm
Event Location
Schmidt Conference Center

Speaker: Matthew Gray (University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science)

Pre-registration Required
No

Event Details

Our Thursday science seminars are free and open to the public. Because they are directed towards a scientific audience, they are more technical than our evening lectures. Visit our Evening Lecture Page to learn more about our free evening lecture series.

11:00AM - 12:00PM
 
 
 
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