Cooper Rosin led a paper that was just published in Forest Ecology and Management, which demonstrates that the increasing hunting of medium and large-bodied mammals in Gabon can lead to significant increases in seed predation by rodents, with subsequent decreases in seedling establishment of commercially-important tree species. Diminished timber seedling establishment in hunted forests may have economic consequences and could lead to the conversion of selectively-logged forests to non-forest land uses with little conservation value, while appropriate management that reduces or eliminates hunting within concessions could preclude these outcomes.
MEM '13, Ben Carlson, led a paper that was just published in Global Change Biology on carbon stocks in dead wood (necromass) in Gabonese forests. In the largest study of deadwood to date in the tropics, we find that deadwood makes up 21% of Gabon's aboveground carbon, a threefold increase over previous estimates. We also show that deadwood stocks increase with logging and the abundance of large trees. Our paper contributes to efforts to refine carbon accounting. The paper has been featured in several online blogs and newspages, including phys.org, Science Daily, Headline News, and others: (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/10/161003183753.htm?).
MEM '14, Mark Burton, led a paper that was just published in Conservation Letters on carbon emissions from oil palm agriculture in Gabon. We demonstrate that if tropical governments enact the appropriate policies, regulating which forests can be cleared and how much remaining forest must be set aside for conservation, they could largely offset the emissions created by converting the land to palm oil plantations. The paper has been featured in several online blogs and newspages, including phys.org, Science Daily, Science Newsline, and Mongabey (https://news.mongabay.com/2016/07/forest-conservation-can-offset-emissions-from-palm-oil-expansion-in-africa-study/).erting the land to palm oil plantations.
Cooper was awarded a travel grant by the graduate school to set up an artificial seedling project with collaborators in Borneo. We are looking forward to seeing pictures of orangutans.
Trisha was awarded the NSOE International Internship Fund 2015 and the Kuzmier-Nikitine-Lee Endowment Fund Award to conduct her fieldwork in Gabon. Congratulations!
Amelia Meier has been awarded a NSF Graduate Research Fellowship! Congratulations, Amelia, on winning this prestigious award.
Chase Nunez, a Duke UPE PhD candidate, has joined our lab! He will be studying the traits of successional tree species to predict the composition of tropical forest with climate change. Chase is a NSF Fellow, and has worked previously in Kenya among other places.
Amelia Meier will join the lab in Fall 2015! Amelia is currently working in northern Gabon on a project to integrate citizen scientists into conservation science as a potential solution for reducing commercial bushmeat hunting. Amelia graduated from UC Berkeley, and has been working in West and Central Africa conducting ecological and cultural research in the field.
Partners & Links
Gabon Parks Agency
Gabon Parks Blog
Gabon Space Observatory
Nicholas School of the Environment
I am an Assistant Professor in the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University. My research focuses on tropical forest plants and animals and their conservation and management.