I am an ecosystem ecologist broadly interested in plant ecology and biogeochemistry. Research in my lab centers on ecosystem analysis, with emphasis on the interactions between soil, water, plants, and the atmosphere that control biological communities and the cycling of nutrients. We use a variety of approaches, from large-scale manipulations to laboratory experiments and paleoecological reconstructions, to understand the resilience of plant communities and ecosystem processes to environmental changes. I am excited by integrative research questions that span levels of biological organization, particularly questions that explore the evolutionary, physiological, and ecological mechanisms that contribute to species controls on ecosystem processes.
We work on a variety of research issues including permafrost degradation and changing wildfire regimes that are important to global change and environmental policy arenas. However, lab members work on a diversity of topics that range from microbial and plant species controls on trace gas emissions to paleo-analysis of peat deposits.
Merritt’s University of Guelph page:
Merritt’s Lab page: