This month, the National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON) continues to push the boundaries of ecological research and development. A team of Michigan State researchers harnessed NEON’s robust database to understand and project the many ways biodiversity and climate change are evolving over time. NEON scientists will also be making a virtual appearance at the 105th Ecological Society of America (ESA) Annual Meeting, an event that brings together the future of ecological research.
This Month’s Spotlight
The latest news from NEON includes:
Researchers at Michigan State University and Bryn Mawr College are using NEON and NASA remote sensing imagery to quantify land use history, disturbance history, geodiversity, and climate across NEON sites and the United States. These data and their computational tools will be compiled in a geospatial database. Researchers at the University of Florida and Western Washington University will link these data to biodiversity patterns of fish, small mammals, and beetles across NEON sites. This research reveals previously unknown information to better understand and predict the influences of natural and human drivers on biodiversity from local to continental scales.
Scientists leveraged NEON data to understand the influence of climate change on species’ food webs, particularly the lasting impacts made on current habitats by species’ migration, unique inter-species interactions, and the resulting gaps in food webs. These studies will be integral for developing effective conservation policies and practices.
At the 2020 ESA Virtual Meeting, NEON scientists will be hosting virtual sessions to present their latest ecological developments. This year’s conference is centered around harnessing the massive and diverse sources of ecological data. NEON presenters will provide insights on new avenues of research that empower scientists to address more complex questions and take on more pressing issues in ecology.
Sponsored by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and operated by Battelle, NEON is a continental-scale ecological observatory facility dedicated to providing high-quality, consistently generated data that is free and available to all users. By enabling scientists, researchers, and students to address critical questions and understand ecosystem changes over time, the NEON project allows the ecological community to tackle questions and problems at a scale that wasn’t possible before.
You can read about the latest research in the NEON Spotlight every month at Inside Battelle, and also on our social media channels. For more information about NEON, visit NEONscience.org.