Dr. Ruth Gates and her group focus their research on coral reefs, marine ecosystems that protect coastlines, support tourism and provide nutrition to many island nations. The global deterioration in the quality of these ecosystems has been widely reported over the last 40 years, reflecting the complex interaction between climate change stressors (thermal anomalies, ocean acidification and storms) and chronic or acute local impacts (coastal development, pollution and over-fishing). Although the future looks bleak, some corals survive, and even thrive in the same conditions that rapidly kill others. Our group seeks to better understand the biological underpinnings of this variability by defining traits that associate with environmental sensitivity and resistance in corals, and with the resilience (capacity to recover) of reefs. Our goal in conducting this research is to contribute basic and applied scientific knowledge that expands understanding of how coral reefs function, and informs the management and conservation of these beautiful but threatened ecosystems.
This lab also has an Experimental Manipulation Facility, which allows researchers to create climate change conditions (e.g. temperature, CO2, capacity for delta light & delta flow) in order to explore Marine living.
This is a quantitative instrument. Lab contains two of these instruments.
This instrument includes a full photo imager.