Summer on a Shoestring


The 49th Annual Hubbard Brook Cooperators Meetings
July 24, 2012, 8:00 pm
Filed under: Hubbard Brook Meetings

After the 49 years of successive sharing of scientific news I finally attended the annual Hubbard Brook Cooperators Meeting.  Of course, I missed the first few because I wasn’t born yet.  Since then however, I have had little excuse and realize that in missing the goings on described in the many talks I have missed out on the development of one of the most significant data sets available today!

To be honest I hadn’t heard of the Cooperators Meeting until sometime in the past few years, although I had know about Hubbard Brook and some of the ground-breaking work conducted during the Hubbard Brook Ecosystem Experiment.

Because the Cooperators meeting is a place-based meeting there is a broad diversity in the areas of research presented.  For me this was a great opportunity to learn about work in some areas very different than my background.  It was also evident the benefit of this cross-disciplinary meeting had for the many scientists present.  To be able to ask questions in such a well described system and have the people there who can look at work from so many different angles can only lead to better results.

The Shoestringers kicked off the talks describing recent data, mostly from the Bartlett MELNHE sites.  Each did a great job and I learned a great deal more than what I had had an opportunity to glean from papers and conversations.  Great job Shoestringers!

Beyond the Shoestring presentations I began to learn about hydrology for the first time in my life.  Admittedly some of this went over my head (not just the evapotranspirationJ) but I now have a better appreciation for how hydrology fits into the biological systems I am used to thinking about. There was great session on species effects in ecosystems including indirect interactions between birds and moose, landscape level effects mediated by beavers, inverted biomass pyramids in a tree, caterpillar bird food chain and a look at the litter fauna at Hubbard Brook.

All in all it was a great time full of good conversations and a lot of learning.  I am looking forward to next year and hopefully I will be able to present too!

-Rick

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