Are you an IU faculty member, IU student, or non-IU affiliated researcher wanting to do research in the environment? Look no further than the IU Research & Teaching Preserve (RTP)! First learn more about our available properties to determine which one will best suit your needs and fill out our research acitivity form. If you are an IU student you can fill out a research grant application found below in order to receive funding for your project! If you have questions, contact us as at !
Past Student Research Projects
The role of migration distance in the timing of reproduction
Abigail Kimmett, Ph.D. Candidate, IU Department of Biology
Abigail Kimmett is an IU Ph.D. candidate who received the RTP Student Grant Award for her research on fox sparrows & their migratory route and the relationship between their migration distance & reproductive timing. Within a migratory species, individuals and populations may exhibit variation in migratory behavior,ranging from residents to obligate migrants, which may reduce or enhance gene flow as populations overlap at different times of the year. Physiological changes responsible for breeding condition must be underway before arrival on the breeding grounds; however, the timing of migration constrains initiation of the breeding season. Migration distance is likely to contribute to timing of reproductive readiness: if an individual has a shorter distance to travel to the breeding grounds, it will likely come into reproductive condition earlier.
Changes in C, N, & P storage and loss in temperate forests in response to N addition
Megan Midgley, Ph.D., IU Department of Biology
Meghan Midgley, a former doctoral student at the IU Department of Biology, researched the changes in C, N, and P storage and loss from ectomycorrhizal and arbuscular mycorrhizal-dominated temperate forests in response to N addition. She examined these changes in storage and retention as well as the mechanisms lead to these changes. She also researched the degree to which different fungal community members (saprotrophs and mycorrhizae) are altered by N deposition and how N-induced changes in fungal structure may lead to changes in their functions as decomposers. Meghan performed her research at Moores Creek and Lilly-Dickey Woods.
Ecological effects of deer populations on wildflower and woody plant diversity
Jessica Wellman, Undergraduate Student
Jessica Wellman is a senior pursuing her B.S. in Human Biology with a concentration in Human Health & Disease. Her research project aims to understand the ecological effects of deer populations. Deer are primarily browsers, feeding heavily on the stems of woody plants and wildflowers. When deer are in overabundance, many plant species can become scarce. Her hypothesis is that the deer density at Griffy Lake is greater than that at Lake Monroe, and has decreased woody stem density, increased browse pressure, and reduced wildflower diversity at the former when compared to the latter. The importance of these two locations is that Lake Monroe is an area with a hunted white-tailed deer population, while hunting at Griffy Lake is prohibited. Jessica collected her data by observing the areas around Lake Monroe and Griffy Lake and counting the number of deer present using trail cameras, the density of woody plants, and the variety of wildflower and plant species within a set amount of space.