Bert presents at the grad student research symposium

Bert contemplating Juncus needlerush from the safety of a sand flat

Bert Anderson, a PhD student in our lab, presented one of his dissertation chapters at the 2018 USF Graduate Student Research Symposium. His poster presented findings from his studies of a fascinating and unusual biophysical environment. Bert studies microbial mats growing across sand flats in saline intertidal zones. Microbial mats are taxonomically and metabolically diverse assemblages of microorganisms coexisting in cohesive, fabric-like mats, and the sand flats they grow across are extreme habitats that lack any other plant life. In this presentation, Bert examined the biogeochemical impacts of these mats on the carbon and nitrogen budgets of the soils atop which they grow.

Sand flats interspersed among a mosaic of upland forest, mangrove and salt marsh vegetation, and open water, along the west-central coast of peninsular Florida. (Image Google Maps)

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