Research Project Measures Overton Park as an Ecosystem

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Publication Date: 12/10/2007

Last year, biology professor Rosanna Cappellato initiated a series of field projects to assess Overton Park as an ecosystem. The research continues this year, building upon efforts of the students enrolled in her Environmental Science course last spring as well as the senior research of Adam Bohnert ’07. 

This fall, Professor Cappellato and Tara Daniel ’08 are calculating the carbon removal and storage in the park’s forest areas using what is called the leaf area index (LAI). The LAI data will be used to complement Bohnert’s carbon studies. The researchers are also conducting a survey that will generate a GIS vegetation map of Overton Park.

Professor Cappellato hopes the studies will help people appreciate the value of Overton Park not simply as a recreational park but as a beneficial ecosystem to the surrounding area. 

(Information compiled by Bryan Hearn, Rhodes Student Associate in the Communications Office.)