Soil fungi may help determine the resilience of forests to environmental change From UCSC News March 16, 2018 By Jennifer McNulty Nature is rife with symbiotic relationships, some of which take place out of sight, like the rich underground exchange of nutrients that occurs between trees and soil fungi. But what happens in the dark may have profound implications above ground, too: A major new study reveals that soil fungi could play a significant [...]
Kai published a paper in Journal of Ecology on mycorrhizal-tree associations across the eastern US. UCSC News: Soil fungi may help determine the resilience of forests to environmental change, according to UC Santa Cruz study Mycorrhizal fungi provide soil nutrients and receive carbon resources from their host plants, with arbuscular and ectomycorrhizal fungi forming the two most common mycorrhizal associations with forest trees. Continental-scale distribution of tree-mycorrhizal associations in relation to soil carbon and [...]
Kai was invited to give a talk at Stanford Complexity Group’s Symposium It’s Complicated…..The Relationship of Complexity Theory to Normative Discourse in Science, Society, and Beyond Talk video available here: https://youtu.be/WYOkf4eerO0
Kai’s 2016 PNAS paper won the Best Young Investigator Paper Award, recognized by the Sino-Ecologists Association Overseas (Sino-Eco). Kai received the award at the Ecological Society of America (ESA) 2017 Annual Meeting in Portland, OR. From the July 2017 issue of Sino-Eco newsletter: Dr. Kai Zhu is an assistant professor at University of California, Santa Cruz. Dr. Zhu completed his postdoc at Carnegie Institution for Science and Stanford University. Dr. Zhu received his Ph.D. in ecology and M.S. [...]
Cong's paper on a new vegetation index is published in Remote Sensing of Environment. Congrats, Cong! Wang C, Chen J, Wu J, Tang Y, Shi P, Black A, Zhu K (2017). A snow-free vegetation index for improved monitoring of vegetation spring green-up date in deciduous ecosystems. Remote Sensing of Environment, 196, 1-12.
Dr. Cong Wang, recently graduated from Beijing Normal University, joins Zhu Lab in March 2017. Cong's PhD research focused on developing new algorithms for improving the monitoring of vegetation phenology using remote sensing and investigating the relationship between vegetation phenology and climate change. Cong brings in expertise in remote sensing to the lab. Welcome, Cong!
Cover image: Pictured is grassland at the Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve in California. Over 17 years, Kai Zhu et al. subjected this grassland to changes in temperature, precipitation, carbon dioxide, and nitrogen, both individually and in combination, to determine how simultaneous changes in multiple global environmental factors would affect primary production. Primary production was a ridge-shaped function of temperature and precipitation, with peak production increasing with added nitrogen and shifting to lower temperatures with added [...]
Warmer, wetter climate would impair California grasslands Zhu K., Chiariello N.R., Tobeck T., Fukami T., Field C.B. (2016). Nonlinear, interacting responses to climate limit grassland production under global change. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1606734113. Paper link Rice University News link Carnegie Institution News link Inside Science -- American Institute of Physics link Associated Press link 17-year experiment finds present climate near optimal for plant growth Jade Boyd/Rice University HOUSTON — (Sep. [...]
Study: Ocean acidification already slowing coral reef growth Experiment dials back clock to test ocean reef growth in preindustrial conditions Albright R., Hosfelt J., Kwiatkowski L., Maclaren J.K., Mason B.M., Nebuchina Y., Ninokawa A., Pongratz J., Ricke K.L., Rivlin T., Schneider K., Sesboüé M., Shamberger K., Silverman J., Wolfe K., Zhu K., Caldeira K. (2016). Reversal of ocean acidification enhances net coral reef calcification. Nature. DOI 10.1038/nature17155 News release below (Rice link here). Jade Boyd/Rice University [...]
Greetings from Houston! I am now a Huxley Faculty Fellow in Department of BioSciences at Rice University. Biology began at Rice in 1912 with the appointment of Julian Huxley as the biology professor. Julian Huxley was the grandson of Thomas H. Huxley, a biologist himself and champion of Charles Darwin. Julian made many important contributions to the fields of ethology, ecology and cancer research, and was a powerful proponent of neo-Darwinism. His efforts are commemorated by [...]