Exploring recovery rates in tropical forests

After one near-missed flight (trying to correct the proof in time for the deadline in an airport flying between islands whilst peat spotting in Indonesia), several near sleepless nights (correcting previous drafts) and three attempts to download free-trial software (for last minute figure alterations whilst >1000 miles away from a computer that had the software on)….I was relieved to have my first paper published earlier this year.  And excited to have Cole associated, in print, with tropical forests, at long last.  The paper describes some research I did as part of my PhD, exploring the rates of tropical forest recovery after different disturbance events in the past.  Many a fossil pollen diagram was trawled to collect the data and we found some interesting results of relevance to the debate on tropical forest resilience.

Back in June, I had the privilege of writing a post on this research and our findings for the Kew Science Blog and to make a cameo appearance on Phil Martin’s Ecology for a crowded planet website, so if  you’d like to read more about the work, have a click (one’s enough – bit of a cut-and-paste job!).  Soon after, to my delight, the great Professor Corey Bradshaw wrote a bit about the research on his ConservationBytes blog.

As a first exploration of the vast data stored in published palaeoecological studies of tropical forest ecosystems, I was pleased with the insights I gleaned, but there’s a lot more potential locked up in these fossil pollen datasets.  I’ve got a long list of questions ready to start researching….as soon as a philanthropist with a tropical forest leaning gets word of the opportunity!

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