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Chestnut Oak Study Published!


Callie Oldfield (Biology C’14), Sarah Oldfield (Mathematics C’18) and Jon Evans published a paper in the journal Forest Ecology and Management on the population dynamics of chestnut oak (Quercus montana). This long-term study is the first to examine the long-term effects of sprouting in a population of oaks across all life history stages. The paper presents data from a one hectare forest plot on the Domain that Evans and his students have studied continuously since 1995. The paper contrasts the role of sprouting and seedling establishment in the persistence of this species on the Cumberland Plateau and projects the future of the population over the next 50 years using a size-class distribution matrix model parameterized from the long-term demography data. Both Callie and Sarah worked on this project as undergraduates and continued the collaboration with Evans in graduate school. Callie is a PhD student in the Department of Botany at the University of Georgia and Sarah is a Masters student in the Department of Mathematics at the University of Arkansas. Both Callie and Sarah expect to receive their graduate degrees in 2021.