Featured Research of Our Members

Dr. Jason Hoeksema

Research in the Hoeksema laboratory uses lab experiments, field studies, modeling, and meta-analysis to address research questions focuses on the ecological and evolutionary consequences of interactions among species, including mutualism, parasitism, and competition. Empirical work focuses mostly on interactions between trees and diverse communities of symbiotic ectomycorrhizal fungi. Major questions being addressed include: How do ecological context and evolutionary history influence the outcomes of species interactions? What are the community, ecosystem, and evolutionary consequences of coupled plant-fungal invasions? How does coevolution operate in diverse mutualisms?

Dr. Marjorie Holland

Starting with my graduate research, I have undertaken three long-term monitoring projects in varied habitats [riverine floodplain, temperate forested glacial remnant islands, and pond/ grassland/ mixed hardwood-coniferous forest]. Two sites are in New England and one in Mississippi. After sampling on a regular basis over 45, 40, and 23 years respectively, I am presently looking at vegetation changes over time. My current research examines changes in vascular plant biodiversity in these different habitats. I began working in a temperate marsh-swamp forest complex in the early 1970s, and realized from listening to presentations at the annual meetings of the American Institute for Biological Sciences (AIBS) that there was a need for long-term studies. Sampling for the second project began five years after the first started: in both projects I have been fortunate to be part of a team of field biologists, so have sampled in each location roughly every 10 years.

The third long-term monitoring commenced as a result of a severe ice storm in 1994, which wreaked havoc across the southeastern states. At the University of Mississippi Field Station, a devastating pine bark beetle infestation followed the ice storm, causing the death of numerous pine trees across the Station. My graduate students and I decided to establish long-term monitoring plots in which vascular plants could be monitored as seedlings, and followed into adulthood. Permanent sampling plots were established in 1996 when seedlings first moved into the areas decimated by the pine bark beetles.