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NIMBioS Seminar Series

In conjunction with the interdisciplinary activities of the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS), a seminar series on topics in mathematical biology will be hosted at NIMBioS every other Tuesday at 3:30 p.m. (unless otherwise noted) in the Hallam Auditorium, Room 206, Claxton Building, 1122 Volunteer Blvd. Seminar speakers will focus on their research initiatives at the interface of mathematics and many areas of the life sciences. Light refreshments will be served in the 1st floor visitor breakroom beginning 30 minutes before each talk. Faculty and students from across the UT community are welcome to join us.


Time/Date: Tuesday, September 18, 2012, 3:30 p.m.*
Location: Hallam Auditorium, Room 206, Claxton Building, 1122 Volunteer Blvd
Speaker: Dr. Jiang Jiang, NIMBioS Postdoctoral Fellow
Topic: Modeling mangrove-hardwood hammock ecotone
Abstract: Coastal vegetation of South Florida typically comprises salinity-tolerant mangroves bordering salinity-intolerant hardwood hammocks or fresh water marshes. Empirical studies show that the boundaries between mangroves and hammocks in coastal ecotones of South Florida are sharp despite the gradual topography. Mechanisms under the sharp ecotone involve physiological and competitive properties of local vegetation, hydrologic processes such as precipitation, tidal fluxes, and salinities of groundwater. However, it is unclear how these interacting ecological-hydrologic processes contribute to the sharp ecotone, and whether the ecotone is vulnerable to regime shifts or resilient to change under disturbance. In this talk, I will 1) disentangle mechanisms of pattern formation on the mangrove-hardwood hammock ecotone using individual based modeling, and 2) investigate possible vegetation regime shifts triggered by storm surge events using a simple mathematical model.

*Join us for refreshments at 3 p.m.

Seminar Flyer (pdf)

For more information about this and other NIMBioS Seminars, visit

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From 2008 until early 2021, NIMBioS was supported by the National Science Foundation through NSF Award #DBI-1300426, with additional support from The University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.
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