Christa P. H. Mulder
Professor in Ecology, Department of Biology and Wildlife and Institute of Arctic Biology
University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, AK 99775, USA
Tel: +1 (907) 474 7703; Fax: +1 (907) 474 6769
Office: Irving I rm 412
I am a plant ecologist who works primarily on plant-animal interactions, usually at the intersection of population, community, and ecosystem ecology. While the questions and the systems I and members of my lab work on are diverse, our work usually involves both direct and indirect interactions between several species, and between those species and their physical environment. We combine field work with greenhouse experiments, historical datasets, and some modeling.
See below for a full c.v.
Far North Phenology Network: My lab also runs several citizen science networks that help us answer questions about how plants respond to climate change in the North by collecting data over much larger areas than we could possibly manage on our own. Some of these projects have been completed, some are in progress, and some are in the planning stages. To find out more about these projects, click here.
Current Research Themes:
My research projects fall into several themes, although some include components from multiple themes (and head off in different directions altogether...). To find out more about these themes, follow the links in the text or on the menu on the left.
Non-native plant species have been expanding rapidly across the state of Alaska, likely aided by higher winter temperatures and long growing seasons, increased levels of human traffic, and more frequent and larger wildfires. We are asking questions about impacts of non-native plants on competition for pollinators, and factors that limit or facilitate expansion into natural habitats.
Arctic and subarctic communities are subject to some of the fastest rates of climate change on the planet. To what extent are impacts on plant communities driven by direct effects (e.g., changes in temperature and precipitation) and to what extent are they driven by changes in interactions with other organisms, such as herbivores or pollinators?
Older Research Themes:
Seabird islands are islands that have high populations of seabirds. They are often remote and in many cases lack the predators found on the mainland or islands closer to the mainland. Seabird islands occur worldwide and they are of high conservation value because they often have very high levels of endemism and may serve as “safe havens” for species that are rare or no longer present on the mainland. However, many of the islands have been invaded by non-native predators such as rats, cats, and foxes, with devastating effects for native bird, reptile and mammal populations. Restoration of hundreds of islands has focused on the removal of these predators, but little attention has been paid to other aspects of restoration beyond monitoring seabird populations.