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Update from a 2014 grant awardee

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  • Update from a 2014 grant awardee


    While the genetic work for my project (the portion funded by the ADKHighpeaks Foundation) is still in its beginning stages, I thought some of you might be interested in an update on the general project, including summer 2014 field work. You can find an end of season report at the following dropbox link:

    I will keep you all updated as the genetic work progresses.

    Happy holidays, and best wishes,

    Me by a patch of Boott's Rattlesnake-root on Armstrong

  • #2
    Glad you had a chance to do your initial work.

    In my opinion, the threat of catastrophic climate change is massively overblown and hopefully you can help further your second and third points about threats to this plant. It seems that an educational outreach about protecting the plant from trampling or nitrogen deposition (from urinating? I'm pretty sure no one is farming on the top of Marcy) would actually have an effect and help this plant.

    (This aligns with an opinion by a noted climatologist Judith Curry. In her congressional testimony (link) she states: "Regional planners and resource managers need high-resolution regional climate projections to support local climate adaptation plans and plans for climate compatible development. This need is unlikely to be met (at least in the short term) by the global climate models. In any event, anthropogenic climate change on timescales of decades is arguably less important in driving vulnerability in most regions than increasing population, land use practices, and ecosystem degradation.")
    ADK 46/46W + MacNaughton, Grid 277/552
    Photos & Stuff


    • #3
      Greetings again! Here is another short update on the project. Hopefully the next time I check in to post I will have more results to report! As always, I am so grateful for the support of the ADKHighpeaks Foundation. This project wouldn't be possible without you.

      Best wishes,

      __________________________________________________ ________________________________

      Research Update

      Assessing the environmental change vulnerability of two rare alpine plants: Prenanthes boottii and Prenanthes trifoliolata var. nana

      In 2014, I sampled leaf tissue of Boott’s rattlesnake-root (Nabalus boottii; syn: Prenanthes boottii) from 15 sites across New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine in order to investigate baseline levels of genetic diversity and provide an indication of its local and global extinction vulnerability, especially with regard to environmental change.

      In 2015, I expanded my original project to include the closely related species three-leaved rattlesnake-root (Nabalus trifoliolatus; syn: Prenanthes trifoliolata). The objectives in doing so included providing greater context for my findings with Boott’s rattlesnake-root and exploring whether the alpine and non-alpine varieties of three-leaved rattlesnake-root are distinct enough to merit their consideration as evolutionary significant units worthy of separate conservation efforts. I sampled leaf tissue from 9 alpine and 6 non-alpine populations across the study region.

      2016 status: Currently the genetic analyses are on hold while I attempt to secure full funding for the project. I plan to proceed with the analyses this coming spring, and should have results to report in the fall of 2017.

      I am very grateful for the support this project has already received from the ADKHighpeaks Foundation, the Edna Bailey Sussman Foundation, New York Flora Association, and SUNY-ESF. I am also grateful for the many individuals and organizations across the Northern Forest region who have assisted me with permitting, logistics, and advice. I look forward to sharing the results of this project with you!

      Kristen Haynes
      PhD student, Ecology
      SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry


      • #4
        Greetings again!

        As I near the end of my graduate program, I wanted to provide another update regarding my research. I expect to complete my degree (at long last) by spring 2019, and will have more complete results to share at that time. In the meantime, here is a short update that shares some preliminary results and progress. As always, huge thanks for your support of this project, which would not be possible without you.

        Please feel free to reach out with any questions you may have. I don't frequent this forum, but can be reached at

        Best wishes,

        Kristen Haynes
        PhD candidate, Ecology
        Lab of Donald J. Leopold
        SUNY College of Environmental Science & Forestry
        Attached Files


        • #5
          Wise to narrow the scope - this way you can be on track for successful completion in 2019.

          Also wise to keep "Climate Change" prominent in the text. Just like "Dot Com" in the 1990s, "Climate Change" is today's magic word to get funding. Foot traffic did more damage to these plants in 50 years than climate change will do in 1000 years, but there's no money in the foot traffic analysis.

          Best of luck, and I hope your eventual results will support the good work of the Summit Stewards.