Invasive plants and pollination of Alaskan berry species: integrating ecology and education
|Spellman, Katie Villano
|Dissertation (Ph.D.) University of Alaska Fairbanks, 2015
|A rapidly changing climate and human disturbance patterns have accelerated the spread of invasive plants species in Alaska. Non-native plant invasions can disrupt pollinator services to native plants and have the potential to impact the pollination and fruit set in berry species important for subsistence harvest. My dissertation aims to address the dual need for greater understanding of the impacts of invasive plants on pollination of berry species in boreal ecosystems and the need for research on education strategies that best prepare Alaskans to respond to the issue. I integrate an ecological field experiment, a citizen science program where data is used to validate phenology models derived from heraium data, and an invasive plants education experiment testing the effects of a metacognitive learning intervention to provide multiple perspectives that inform the management of invasive plants in Alaska. The ecological field experiment found that invasive Melilotus albus acts as a magnet species for pollinators, which increased seed production in Vaccinium vitis-idaea, slightly decreased pollination in Rhododendron groenlandicum, and had no detectable interactions with Vaccinium uliginosum. The impact M. albus had on R. groenlandicum changed with distance from the invasive plant patch, but the impact on V. vitis-idaea did not. Using data from a statewide citizen science program monitoring the phenology of these species, I found that herbarium-based phenology models were valid for assessing relative shifts in phenology of these species across Alaska. Employing the research on M. albus and the berry species as a test case, I found that students who received the metacognitive learning intervention show long-term improvement in metacognitive skills compared to students in the control group, but that the groups did not differ in their ability to apply resilience thinking skills to the environmental problem-solving. I synthesized social-ecological resilience and education research to investigate how citizen science and metacognitive learning could contribute to the capacity of Alaskans to respond to social-ecological change. Together, the ecology and education research presented here provide diverse perspectives on how to best manage and build the human capacity to manage M. albus near subsistence plant species.
|CHAPTER 1. Introduction- Non-native plant invasions and pollination of Alaskan berry species : integrating ecology and education using a social-ecological systems research framework -- Invasive plants in a changing Alaska -- Invasive plants and the pollination of subsistence species -- Role of education and outreach in managing invasive plants in Alaska -- Social-ecological systems perspective for non-native plants invasions in Alaska -- Dissertation goals and approach -- Ecological experiment -- Citizen science -- Metacognition -- Synthesizing ecology and education research -- Literature cited -- CHAPTER 2. Effects of non-native Melilotus albus on pollination and reproduction in two boreal shrubs -- Abstract -- Introduction -- Methods -- Study area -- Experimental design -- Pollinator activity and community -- Pollination -- Fruit set and seed production -- Environmental covariates -- Analysis -- Results -- Effects of M. albus on pollinator activity and community -- Effects of M. albus on native plant pollination and reproduction -- Relative importance of M. albus and environmental factors in predicting reproduction -- Discussion -- M. albus effect on pollination and reproduction of two boreal shrubs -- Relative importance of M. albus and environmental variables in explaining reproduction -- Further considerations -- Acknowledgements -- References -- CHAPTER 3. Effects of invasive plant patch size and distance on the pollination and reproduction of native boreal plants -- Abstract -- Introduction -- Methods -- Study area -- Experimental design -- Pollination -- Seed production -- Native vegetation characteristics -- Analysis -- Results -- Distance range of M. albus pollen deposition -- M. albus effect and distance -- Native vegetation and distance -- Discussion -- Acknowledgements -- References -- CHAPTER 4. Validating herbarium-based phenology models using citizen science data -- Abstract -- Introduction -- Herbarium-based model development -- Citizen science data collection -- Model validation approach -- Validating herbarium-based phenology models -- Strengths and weaknesses of herbarium dataset -- Applications and practical considerations -- Conclusions -- Acknowledgements -- Literature cited -- CHAPTER 5. Metacognitive learning in the ecology classroom: a tool for preparing problem solvers in a time of rapid change? -- Abstract -- Introduction -- Metacognition in education theory and practice -- Research context and questions -- Methods -- Study context and experimental design -- Assessment tools -- Analysis -- Results -- Assessment and rubric reliability and validity measures -- Metacognitive skills -- Resilience thinking skills in environmental problem solving -- Discussion -- Metacognitive skills -- Resilience thinking ability -- Student ability level -- Increasing the impact of metacognitive learning on social-ecological problem solving -- Acknowledgements -- Literature cited -- Appendix -- CHAPTER 6. Educating for resilience in the North: building a toolbox for teachers -- Abstract -- Introduction -- Resilience attributes and education -- Human capital -- Social capital -- Sense of place -- Review of resilience learning tools -- Systems thinking -- Metacognition -- Scenarios thinking -- Citizen science -- Stewardship learning -- Institutional hurdles and policy suggestions -- Resilience learning tools in compulsory curriculum -- Evaluation of learning within a resilience framework -- Teacher training to support resilience learning -- Conclusions -- Acknowledgements -- Literature cited -- CHAPTER 7. Conclusion- Managing berries and invasive plants in Alaska: Insights from ecology and education research -- Linkage A- Ecological field experiments and understanding the effects of sweetclover on pollination -- Linkage B- Citizen science contribution to ecological understanding and management -- Linkage C- Citizen science and human outcomes -- Linkage D- Impact of metacognitive learning strategies on human capital -- Further directions -- Literature cited -- APPENDIX A. Report on learning by participants in the Melibee Project citizen science program -- APPENDIX B. Protocol for the Melibee Project Citizen Science Program.
|Invasive plants and pollination of Alaskan berry species: integrating ecology and education
|Department of Biology and Wildlife
|McGuire, A. David
Files in this item
This item appears in the following Collection(s)
Includes WIldlife Biology and other Biological Sciences. For Marine Biology see the Marine Sciences collection.