ADRIAN STIER

My research program explores the role of species interactions in driving the structure, function, and assembly of ecological communities, with emphasis on the dynamics of aquatic ecosystems. My work spans a diverse array of taxa (fishes, invertebrates, and salamanders) and my projects include both temperate and tropical ecosystems. My approach is integrative,  I use a combination of experiments, descriptive studies, and modeling to develop and test ecological theory and inform conservation and management.  I follow the scientific method but am aware that some of the most interesting phenomena in biology are inconspicuous and remain undiscovered; therefore I apply both a careful understanding of natural history and a willingness to conduct experiments when complexity obscures obvious pattern.

My research program seeks to answer 4 central questions in ecology:

Trophic Biogeography: How does food webs structure vary across heterogeneous landscapes, and what are the consequences of habitat heterogeneity on the strength of ecological process?

Community Assembly: How does the sequence and timing of species arrival modify competition and predation to drive community assembly and species coexistence?

Species Interactions: How do direct and higher-order species interactions affect community structure and function?

Population Dynamics: How do abiotic, biotic, and stage-structured processes govern early recruitment dynamics of organisms living in demographically open systems?

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