IB c226: On Isotopes and Interfaces: how isotope data can inform ecological research being done across system boundaries
Interfaces, boundaries or ecotones are ubiquitous in nature and affect a wide range of ecological systems at multiple spatial scales. These interfaces differ in their properties and the ways that they influence exchange between adjacent systems. Although they have been the focus of considerable ecological research, more understanding is needed as natural and human-induced processes make the world increasingly "edgy". Stable isotope methods allow ecologists to trace materials to their origin, quantify transformations during exchange events and track the quantity and concentration of materials. The application of stable isotope approaches to the study of ecological interfaces has provided new insights and promises to open up new opportunities to deepen our understanding of interfaces in ecology. These are the issues that will be explored in this fall semester's "Isotopics" seminar.