Paliza Shrestha '10

I worked with Dr. Sari Juutinen on Professor Bubier’s research project investigating ‘the effects of nutrient inputs on carbon dioxide exchange’ at Mer Bleue bog in Ottawa, Canada. The experiment is a continuation of a decade long research to measure the effects of nitrogen inputs on vegetation composition that will have long term impacts on the carbon balance of Mer Bleue bog. Peatland ecosystems are important area of research in the global climate change context because they store one third of the global soil carbon (Gorham, 1991). Mer Blue itself is a nutrient poor peatland, and like many other peat lands around the world, has been affected by anthropogenic nitrogen inputs resulting from industrial activities and fossil fuel combustion.

This research opportunity has equipped me with practical skills, and most importantly, help put things I have learned in classroom setting into meaningful perspective through intense fieldwork activity. Designing experiments and analyzing data using statistical tools will be valuable skill to have for students interested for research opportunities in ecosystem studies. Mer Bleue bog has been one the best experiences I have had doing science.