Male In, Re-bait: The Difficulties of Density

One of the greatest challenges that faces ecologists is that of estimating “real” processes from what we sample. It is our job to characterize observable phenomena, but when we do surveys, or set traps, or tag and recapture things, the data we get are just a tiny snapshot of ecological patterns and processes that occur … Continue reading

“Ecosystem Gestalt,” Hawaiian Ways of Knowing and the Power of Modeling

I am currently at the Ecological Society of America’s 96th Annual Meeting, held in Austin, Texas. The conference has been enlightening so far: workshops started this weekend, and great talks abound for the upcoming hours and days. This morning, the plenary talk was presented by Stephen W. Pacala, ESA MacArthur Lecturer and Director of the … Continue reading

Beads Fall Into Burrows. Can You Dig It?

While we are busying ourselves aboveground, marching around, measuring things, and generally living our terrestrial lives, there is a whole lot of activity going on beneath our feet: an underworld bristling with burrowers, both on land and at sea. This world is fascinating, and we also have a hard time truly comprehending it, or seeing … Continue reading

Do You Manage Your Invasives With That Model?

Once a species has invaded, it’s hard to make it disappear again. Therefore, researchers and managers are always looking for ways to manage without micromanaging: they look for patterns in the growth or spread of species that might indicate a threshold of manageability. A well-known case here in Hawaii is the introduction of decorator urchins … Continue reading

  • Mahalo Nui Loa

    I recently graduated from the Donahue Lab at the University of Hawai'i at Manoa and am currently a graduate student at the University of Washington. This research is funded by a Graduate Research Fellowship from the National Science Foundation, as well a scholarship from the Seattle chapter of the Achievement Rewards for College Scientists (ARCS) Foundation.
  • “Where do ecological ideas come from? …Most do not spring deductively from the minds of ecologists, like Athena from the head of Zeus. Instead, they emerge when ecologists absorb the essential spirit of individual places– their genius loci.”

    ~Mary V. Price & Ian Billick, "The Ecology of Place"
  • “Aloha is the intelligence with which we meet life.”

    ~Olana A'i, Kumu Hula

  • “I no longer say ‘Hawaiian ways of knowing’ anymore. Because people relegate that to the margins. ‘Ways of knowing,’ as if it’s a quaint, anthropologic way of describing something outside us. No, it’s ‘epistemology,’ the philosophy of knowledge. Land educates. ‘Ike ‘aina. The land of your birth educates you. This land here educates you.”

    ~Manu Meyer