Welcome to BiodiversiTREE!  

Left to right: Intern Dejeanne Doublet, senior scientist John Parker, postdoc Susan Cook-Patton and intern Emily Dubois.

BiodiversiTREE is a long-term, large-scale project to investigate the power and value of diversity in forests.  The experimental forest contains over 20,000 trees planted in 2013 across 19 hectares of SERC property. SERC senior scientist John Parker leads the project, and it is expected to continue for more than 100 years.    

There are a variety of questions scientists are trying to answer at the site.  For example, does a diverse forest support more animal species, improve water quality, and mitigate climate change?  Do particular species induce disproportionate effects on mixed groups of trees?  Do soil microbes play a larger than expected role in forest health?  Click here to learn more about the BiodiversiTREE research questions.

Scientists employ many methods to learn about the BiodiversiTREE plots.  They record insect damage, monitor the growth and survival of thousands of individual trees, analyze soil and water quality, and collect data on the movement of herbivores, such as deer and rabbits, through the plots.  Data will be collected frequently during the entire course of the experiment, but they have already taken some initial measurements.  You can learn about them in the data section.

Given the size of this experiment (visiting each tree in a day would require over 27 miles of walking, more than a marathon!), BiodiversiTREE needs the help of citizen scientists.  Click here to learn how you can get involved.