Lab Members

Join Us!

Are you interested in tropical ecology? Do you have extensive field experience or quantitative skills? Do you want to gain these skills?

Learn more »

Simon A. Queenborough

Mrs. John (Elizabeth W.) Musser Director

Tropical Resources Institute, Yale University

Research Scientist and Lecturer

School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, Yale University

PhD University of Aberdeen, UK 2006
MSc Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh & University of Edinburgh, UK 2001
BA (Hons) University of Cambridge, UK 2000

Simon works in a wide variety of ecosystems, from isolated tropical forests and threatened savannas to arable farms. His main long-term field site is the Yasuni Scientific Research Station in Yasuni National Park, Ecuador, in collaboration with Renato Valencia (Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Ecuador).

  • simon.queenborough@yale.edu

cv and online profiles

Luis Pablo Alvia Zambrano

Parataxonomist and Field Technician

Laboratorio de Ecología de Plantas, Escuela de Ciencias Biológicas
Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador (PUCE)
Quito, Ecuador

Parataxonomist Herbario QCA, PUCE, Ecuador 2003

Pablo has over 10 years experience working as a botanist in the lowland tropical forests of Ecuador. He has helped with the taxonomy of the 50-ha plot and a number of other projects. He is currently censusing 3500 Myristicaceae trees on the Yasuni FDP for flower and fruit production.

Publications

Simon A. Queenborough, Pablo Alvia, Andrew Muehleisen & Renato Valencia. Guide to the woody species of Yasuni with extra-floral nectaries. in prep.

Barriga, P.A., Garwood, N.C. & Alvia, P. 2004. Especies de Cecropia en el Parque Nacional Yasuni, Orellana, Ecuador. Guia de Color Rapido, Field Museum, Chicago, EEUU.

Rivadeneira, C., Villa, G., Garwood, N.C. & Alvia, P. 2004. Frutos y Semillas Grandes de Yasuni. Guia de Color Rapido, Field Museum, Chicago, EEUU.

Santiana, J., Villa, G., Garwood, N.C. & Alvia, P. 2003. Algunas Arboles Comunes de Bombacaceae en los Bosques Húmedas del Ecuador. Guia de Color Rapido, Field Museum, Chicago, EEUU.

Anelio Loor

Field Technician

Laboratorio de Ecología de Plantas, Escuela de Ciencias Biológicas
Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador (PUCE)
Quito, Ecuador

Anelio has over 10 years experience working as a field technician in the lowland tropical forests of Ecuador. He has helped with the censuses of the 50-ha plot and many other projects. He is currently censusing Duroia trees on the Yasuni FDP for ant presence.

Juan Carlos Penagos Zuluaga

PhD candidate, 2012 -

Research Associate, Missouri Botanical Garden

MS University of Missouri-St Louis, MO, USA 2010
BS National University of Columbia, Medellin, Colombia 2004

Juan Carlos completed his masters at the Missouri Botanical Garden and is interested in plant hydraulics and floral evolution and ecology of Neotropical Lauraceae.

Publications

Albrecht, M.A. and J.C. Penagos Z. 2012. Seed germination ecology of three imperiled plants of rock outcrops in the southeastern United States. Journal of the Torrey Botanical Society 139: 85-94. doi: 10.3159/TORREY-D-11-00066.1

MS thesis: Evaluation of the relationship of Aiouea with Cinnamomum, Ocotea and Mocinnodaphne (Lauraceae) using epidermal leaf characters.

Andrew Muehleisen

PhD candidate, 2014 -

Undergraduate Honors thesis, 2012-2013

Andrew came on the Panama field course in May 2012 and was so enamoured with the tropics that he successfully applied for an OSU Summer Research Fellowship, and went down to Yasuni in the summer of 2012 to survey species for extra-floral nectaries.

Publications

Muehleisen, A., Queenborough, S.A., Valencia, R. & Fiala, B. Incidence of extra-floral nectaries and their effect on the growth and survival of tropical forest trees, in review.

Simon A. Queenborough, Pablo Alvia, Andrew Muehleisen & Renato Valencia. Guide to the woody species of Yasuni with extra-floral nectaries. in prep.

Presentations

Incidence of extra-floral nectaries and their impact on the growth and survival of tropical forest trees. OSU Undergraduate Research Forum, October 2012; Natural and Mathematical Sciences Forum March 2013 (Award ), and Denman Forum 2013.


Megan Sullivan

PhD candidate 2017 -

Research Assistant 2014 - 2015

Megan worked on the cerrado leaf area project.

Bart DiFiore

MESc, 2015 - 2017

BA Middlebury College, VT 2010

Bart's research will focus on trophic regime shifts and the complex interplay humans have in driving or mediating these shifts, particularly of herbivory of sea grasses around coral reefs.


Elizabeth Tokarz

Undergraduate thesis 2015 - 2016

Habitat associations of herbaceous plants in Yasuní National Park, Amazonian Ecuador: A study of Heliconia.


Camille Delavaux

MESc 2014 - 2016

Nutrient enrichment effects on mycorrhizal fungi and plant diversity in an Andean tropical montane forest.

Raleigh Ricart

PhD candidate, 2012 - 2014

MS New York University, NY, USA 2012
BS & BA Rice University, TX, USA 2009

Raleigh joined the lab after his masters at NYU. He is interested in diversity and environmental gradients.

Publications

MS thesis: Predicting the movement of the boreal-temperate forest ecotone of North America due to climate change, using species-specific range shift models.


Laura Mason

Undergraduate research 2011 - 2014

Laura has been with the lab since Jan. 2012, and also came on the Panama field course in May 2012. She has been busy creating and managing a number of databases.

Presentations

The Effect of Life Form, Canopy Position, and Ecosystem on the Sex Ratios of Dioecious Populations Primarily in the Tropics OSU Denman Forum 2013.

Shannon Hibbard

Undergraduate research 2013 - 2014

Shannon joined the lab in early 2013, and is looking at fruit size and defence traits of tropical trees.

Presentations

A Petrologic Study of Lavas Erupted along the South East Indian Ridge. OSU Denman Forum 2013. Honorable Mention

Edward Harper

Undergraduate research 2013 - 2014

Edward is working on classifying leaf size and margin type of woody species of the cerrado region of Brazil. He joined the lab following Introductory Biology in Fall 2012.

John Lin

Undergraduate research 2013 - 2014

John is working on classifying drip-tips of tree and shrub species of the cerrado region of Brazil.

He is currently majoring in a Bachelor of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences and is interested in attending medical school.

John Boudouris

Undergraduate research 2011-2012

John came on the Panama field course in May 2012 and has now graduated, but completed a fine research project on extra-floral nectaries in the Brazilian cerrado.

Publications

Boudouris, J. & Queenborough, S.A. 2013. Diversity and distribution of extra-floral nectaries in the cerrado savanna vegetation of Brazil. PeerJ 1:e219. doi: 10.7717/peerj.219

Presentations

Diversity and distribution of extra-floral nectaries in the savanna vegetation of South America. Denman Undergraduate Research Forum, The Ohio State University. March 2012.

Grants

OSU Undergraduate Research Scholarship, 2011.

Cristina Porras Borja

Undergraduate research 2010-2011

Cristina is currently studying Biology at the Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Ecuador in Quito.

Publications

Queenborough, S.A. & Porras, C.M. 2013 Expanding coverage of plant trait databases - a comparison of specific leaf area from fresh and dried leaves. Plant Ecology & Diversity, online early. doi: 10.1080/17550874.2013.777483. |

James Smith

MSc fieldwork 2011

James carried out his MSc fieldwork in the Yasuni FDP, looking at the change in liana abundance since 2001, and the effect of lianas on fruit production of trees.
He is currently doing his PhD at ETH, Zurich (2011 - present).

Publications

Smith, J.R., Queenborough, S.A., Valencia, R. & Romero, H. Lianas in a western Amazonian rain forest - dynamics and detrimental effects on trees. in prep.

Anton Flugge

PhD fieldwork 2011

Anton also carried out fieldwork in the summer of 2011, getting field experience for his PhD at University College, London. He looked at the spatial distribution of dioecious Cecropia trees in the Yasuni FDP.

Luke Smith

MSc fieldwork 2009

Luke carried out fieldwork for his masters thesis in the summer of 2009, while studying at University College, London. He looked at the spatial distribution of seedlings and saplings around parent trees at the Yasuni Scientific Research Station (some hunting) with seedlings and trees at the Tiputini Biological Station two hours down river (no hunting).

Julia Weintritt

Research assistant 2008-2009

Julia carried out research on a project funded by the Systematics Association, compiling a database of reproductive traits of tropical tree species. She currently administers the DRYFLOR network, based at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, UK.