Welcome to the Martina Lab Global Change in Wetlands and Grasslands
We study global change in wetlands and grasslands. We use field, laboratory and computational modeling techniques to test hypotheses concerning some of the most important drivers of global change, such as biological invasion, nitrogen deposition and climate change. We look at plant invasions holistically, from the species traits and external drivers that allow these aggressive species to dominant, to what effects their dominance has on the ecosystem, with the overall goal of using newly gained information to manage their populations and restore invaded ecosystems. While we mainly focus on the causes and consequences of biological invasion, we also study nutrient pollution, disturbance, endangered species and restoration of degraded ecosystems.
Some questions we address include: How do global change drivers (such as eutrophication, disturbance, etc.) affect plant community composition? Why do certain species become invasive? What physiological, reproductive, and morphological traits allow for their competitive superiority? What are the consequences of invasion to the native biota and how do these changes affect nutrient cycling and carbon storage? What restoration techniques best control their populations?