Emergent technologies to study animal subsidies across scales

Nutrient transport and mobilization across ecosystem boundaries is a fundamental process in ecosystem functioning. However, it can be challenging to keep track of all the variables that feed into this process and drive its effects on ecosystem dynamics and stability. Challenges arise because of the extremely multidisciplinary nature of these works, which often span the fields of ecology, remote sensing, geology, chemistry, and mathematics. Because of this, often studies are limited in what they can measures and what they can test within the short, intesive field sampling seasons. I am collaborating with a group of researchers from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Sciences to develop a methodological framework to guide studies of nutrient transfer in the field. We are drawing upon our diverse ecological backgrounds, as well as novel statistical methods, open-source software, and publicly available dataset to produce guidelines for future studies of this process.

Relevant Publications

Ellis-Soto, D., Ferraro, K.M., Rizzuto, M., Briggs, E., Monk, J.D., and Schmitz, O.J. (2020). A methodological roadmap to quantify animal-vectored spatial ecosystem subsidies. EcoEvoRxiv. preprint

Rizzuto, M., Leroux, S.J., Vander Wal, E., Richmond, I. C., Heckford, T. R., Balluffi-Fry, J., Wiersma, Y. F. (2020).Forage stoichiometry predicts the home range size of a small terrestrial herbivore. bioRxiv. preprint

Balluffi-Fry, J., Leroux, S.J., Wiersma, Y.F., Heckford, T.R., Rizzuto, M., Richmond, I.C., Vander Wal, E. (2020). Quantity-quality trade-offs revealed using a multiscale test of herbivore resource selection on elemental landscapes. Ecology and Evolution, 10, 13847–13859. open_access

Rizzuto, M., Leroux, S. J., Vander Wal, E., Wiersma, Y. F., Heckford, T. R., and Balluffi-Fry, J. (2019). Patterns and potential drivers of intraspecific variability in the body C, N, and P composition of a terrestrial consumer, the snowshoe hare (Lepus americanus). Ecology and Evolution, 9, 14453–14464. open_access