What Are They Doing?
Microbial communities are more than just a scientific curiosity. Microbes represent the single largest source of evolutionary and biochemical diversity on the planet. They are the major agents for cycling carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, and other elements through the ecosystem. Despite their importance in ecosystem function, microbes are still generally overlooked in food web models and nutrient cycles.
Moreover, microbes do not live in isolation: their growth and metabolism are influenced by complex interactions with other microorganisms. This project will focus on the ecology, activity, and roles of microbial communities in Antarctic Lake ecosystems.