We use a range of techniques to ask questions about the functioning of natural and human-impacted watersheds.  We are particularly interested in identifying the flowpaths by which water carries nutrients and other solutes from the landscape to rivers and the biogeochemical transformations that occur during transport to and within aquatic ecosystems.  Our work includes natural watersheds and watersheds with human-impacts such as urbanization which alter both the hydrologic functioning of a watershed and the solutes that are delivered to the aquatic system.  Our work is predominantly field- and lab-based with a heavy focus on hydrology and water chemistry.  Specific techniques include:

  • Using fluorescence spectroscopy to identify chemical changes in organic matter which correspond to organic matter sources and processing
  • Tracer studies, using conservative or reactive tracers, to characterize stream hydrology and nutrient processing
  • Interpreting evidence from a range of hydrochemical measurements (anions, cations, isotopes, nutrients, etc) to characterize surface-subsurface interactions