Thursday, June 10, 2010


Changes are occurring in our climate and in our vegetative communities, but the links between abiotic drivers-and-constraints of ecosystem stability-and-dynamics are not well understood. How much wiggle-room we have in choosing our ecosystems might be important. I'm intrigued by evidence showing that some ecosystems are more "efficient", "productive" or "stable" than other ecosystems. I'm interested in the processes that control bimodal grass-shrub community choices -- middle down (fire, herbivore) or bottom up (temperature, rainfall timing/amount). So far the evidence seems to suggest that fire or grazing can only fudge (speed up?) natural changes based mainly on precipitation. When it doesn't rain the grass dies and there's not much you can do about that. Do disturbances transform ecosystems or are slow changes stochastically-mediated saltational discrete disturbances?

These changes create opportunities for research to understand fundamental processes and attributes of ecosystem science.

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