LUQ-LTER May 2015
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As of March 27th, Jess Zimmerman replaced Nick Brokaw as lead PI of the Luquillo LTER. Nick will remain as co-PI along with Mike Willig, Grizelle Gonzalez, and Whendee Silver. 

The new Science and Advisory Council (SEAC) is made up of the following members: 
Báez, Noelia  ex officio Education Coordinator    
Bloch, Chris elected 2015      
Covich, Alan elected 2015      
Heartsill-Scalley, Tamara elected 2015      
Hogan, Aaron ex officio Student Representative    
Lugo, Ariel ex officio Founding PI      
Meléndez, Eda ex officio Information Manager    
Pringle, Cathy former Executive Committee, by-laws addendum
Ramírez, Alonso former Executive Committee, by-laws addendum
Shiels, Aaron elected 2015      
Uriarte, Maria elected 2015      
Waide, Bob ex officio Founding PI      
Wood, Tana  elected 2015
Annual LTER Meeting
June 4th and 5th
Below is a tentative schedule of events for the annual meeting:

June 2nd - Joint overnight fieldtrip with LCZO to Guánica
June 3rd - Hike to CTE plots for anyone interested.
June 4th - International Institute of Tropical Forestry, Jardín Botánico, Rio Piedras
8:30 a.m. – Coffee
8:45 – Introductions
9:00 – State of LUQ-LTER & Overview of Current Proposal (Jess Zimmerman)
9:45 - TRACE:  The Evolution of a Tropical Warming Experiment (Tana Wood)
10:30 Break
11:00 – LCZO Plenary (TBA)
12:00 p.m. – Lunch (Graduate Student Meeting)
1:00-2:30– Lightning talks – 5 minutes per person
2:30 – Posters

June 5th- UPR Ciencias naturales A-211
8:30 a.m. – Coffee
Reports from planning groups:
9:00 – Modeling (Jess Zimmerman)
9:20 – Biodiversity (Sheila Ward)
9:40 – Stream research (Alonso Ramírez)
10:00 – Succession (Lars Walker)
10:20 – Break
10:50 -- Discussion
11:20 – Planning for LUQ 6.  Exploring ideas.
11:45  – Overview of educational activities (Noelia Báez)
12:00 p.m. – Lunch (MC meet with Associates)
1:00 - 2:00 – Town meeting
2:20 – Graduate Student Issues
2:40 - Post-doctoral associate issues
3:00 – All Scientists Meeting plans
3:15 – ESA meeting plans

If you are interested in giving a lightning talk on June 4th, please email Talks are limited to 5 minutes and 3 slides.

If you are interested in presenting a poster, please email

Other Upcoming Meetings

52nd Annual Meeting of The Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation, July 12-16, Honolulu, Hawaii
Theme: Resilience of Island Systems in the Context of Climate Change:  Challenges for Biological and Cultural diversity and Conservation
Early bird registration is open until June 1st. Abstract submission is closed.
See the ATBC website for more information

Ecological Society of America Meeting, August 9-14, Baltimore, Maryland
   Theme: Ecological science at the frontier: Celebrating the ESA Centennial
Early bird registration is open until June 18th.
See the ESA website for more information

2015 LTER All Scientists Meeting, August 30-September 2, Estes Park, Colorado
     Theme: From Long-Term Data to Understanding: Toward a Predictive Ecology
Early registration is $50 until July 31st ($75 after). Housing reservations are now being accepted (ends June 29 or once space runs out) and a special shuttle rate from the airport to the YMCA is available. 
Working group proposals and poster abtracts can be submitted until July 31st. 
See the ASM website for more information, including a general agenda and list of keynote speakers.

TRACE Update
The construction of the plots for the Tropical Responses to Altered Climate Experiment (TRACE) was recently completed near the Sabana Field Research Station in the Luquillo Experimental Forest. Collection of pre-treatment data has already started, while the infrared warming of the experimental plots is expected to begin in August.
TRACE, the first field warming experiment in a tropical forest, will help understand how tropical forests respond to the projected increases in temperature. To collaborate or volunteer for TRACE, please visit You can also contribute to the TRACE project by DONATING at
USDA Deputy Secretary Visit
Deputy Secretary Harden (left) being briefed by IITF Project Leader Grizelle Gonzalez while touring the newly established warming experiment near the Sabana Filed Research Station.

In January, IITF hosted USDA Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden during her visit to the USDA Caribbean Climate Sub Hub. IITF researchers were able to speak with her about the research being done by the institute, including long term ecosystem processes and services program, the social ecological work on climate change in relation to forest management, and the monitoring and experimental research within the climate change program. 

Read the Deputy's blog post about her visit.
Dr. Ricardo Lopez, director of the Institute of Pacific Islands Forestry in Hilo, Hawaii, visited IITF and El Verde in March and was able to tour many facilities. Clockwise from bottom left: Sarah Stankavich, Samuel Moya, Dr. Lopez, and Jess Zimmerman speaking before a tour of the CTE plots, Dr. Lopez and Olga Mayol, and Tamara Heartsill, Olga Mayol, Dr. Lopez, and Samuel Moya at the climate station in East Peak.

Dr. Lopez also presented a seminar at IITF to give an overview of ongoing research at the Institute of Pacific Islands Forestry.
Recent Publications
Hall, C. 2015. To be or not to be, that is still the question [Review of the book Dodging Extinction by T. Baronsky] BioScience
doi: 10.1093/biosci/biv054
   Full text of this article

Pérez-Villalona, H., J.C. Cornwell, J.R. Ortiz-Zayas, and E. Cuevas. 2015. Sediment denitrification and nutrient fluxes in the San José Lagoon, a tropical lagoon in the highly urbanized San Juan Bay estuary, Puerto Rico. Estuaries and Coasts.
     Full text of this article

Petermann, J.S., V.F. Farjalla, M. Jocque, P. Kratina, A.A.M. MacDonald, N.A.C. Marino, P.M. Omena, G.C.O. Piccoli, B.A. Richardson, M.J. Richardson, G.Q. Romero, M. Videla, and D.S. Srivastava. 2015. Dominant predators mediate the impact of habitat size on trophic structure in bromeliad invertebrate communities. Ecology 96:428-439.
     Full text of this article

Richardson, M.J., B.A. Richardson, and D.S. Srivastava. 2015. The stability of invertebrate communities in bromeliad phytotelmata in a rain forest subject to hurricanes. Biotropica 47:201-207.
     Full text of this article

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