Welcome to the Schmitz Lab Blog!
Our lab is based at Yale's School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and, led by Dr. Oswald Schmitz, we are 2 Post-docs, 4 PhD students and 4 Masters students. Our research ranges over 4 continents from grasshoppers in the grasslands of Connecticut to tigers in the jungles of central India. We dig on our hands and knees for goldenrod rhizomes and climb 100m in emergent rainforest trees. Tying together all of these species, systems and methods is our common passion for understanding how ecological communities function and how humans affect those dynamics.
More technically, Os' research focuses on plant-herbivore interactions and how they are mediated by carnivores and soil-nutrient levels, both at the level of herbivore foraging ecology and plant-herbivore population dynamics. He'll tell you more about the details in future posts, but these kinds of questions permeate all of the lab's research. We use a combination of empirical research and mathematical modeling to understand ecosystem structure and function.
This blog is our effort to reach out to a broader audience to talk about our research, our interests and our perspective on scientific news and discoveries. Our weekly blog will be updated occasionally with posts from lab members on their research, pictures from the field, not-to-miss links to scientific articles and our take on them and much more, so stay tuned! We're targeting anyone with an interest in the natural world and we'd love to spark discussion, so if we're not making sense or you want more information, respond with a comment or send us an email and we'll follow up with another blog post.
In addition to this blog we'll be tweeting. Follow us on Twitter for more frequent updates on the Schmitz lab.