Biological

Working Group

Mission/Vision

To define a consistent set of instruments and procedures to measure biological variables across the LTAR network.

Broad Research Question: How is biodiversity related to the provision of ecosystem services within agricultural landscapes and do these relationships change under different management systems, and in response to changing climate and land use?

Objectives

  • Site Characterization of ANPP, soils and plant diversity. Archive samples for tissue analysis in BAU.
  • Work on protocols for biodiversity. If protocols are already in place, implement the protocols on several sites as a pilot project.
  • Research Questions:  1) How is ANPP and growing season length related to plant and soil microbial diversity?(will add insect diversity when available). 2) How do phenological conditions influence ANPP?

Activities

Beltsville, MD (March 2015)
  • Initial meeting of Biological Working Group.
  • Identified and discussed core measurements.
  • Compiled preliminary protocols.
Archbold Biological Station, Venus, FL (February 2016)
  • Finalized protocols of key measurements
  • Identified other potential measurements
  • Identified research questions
Next steps
  • Interact with other workgroups to identify Tier 1 (required) and Tier 2 (optional) assessments.
  • Sites are collecting data and data must be compiled into a network database
  • Pilot test potential measurements

Accomplishments

  1. A set of standard operating procedures (SOPs) and sampling methodology have been developed
  2. All LTAR sites have operating phenocams
  3. As of 2016:
  • 10 sites reporting measurements of ANPP
  • 6 sites reporting measurements of plant diversity
  • 5 sites reporting measurements of livestock production
  • 2 sites reporting measurements of arthropod diversity

Currently compiling measurements completed by each site in 2017

Datasets Produced

List datasets that will be produced (compiled or managed) by this working group.
  • Phenology camera
  • Aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP)
  • Plant diversity
  • Soil microbial diversity
  • Total C, N, and P at ANPP level
  • Biological pests

Manuscripts Published

List of manuscripts published or under development with LTAR Biological datasets.

Working Group Name

Biological Working Group

Leader(s)

David Augustine, Lauren Porensky, Betsey Boughton

Members

List will appear here


Agricultural Research Service