A graduate student at University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley, Leticia Contreras, recently completed a month-long stay at NOAA'sCenter for Coastal Fisheries and Habitat Research in Beaufort, NC. Contreras worked with NCCOS scientist Carolyn Currin and NRC post-doc Nathan McTigue to test several hypotheses about factors influencing the rate of mangrove leaf decomposition, the subject of her thesis.
She also assisted NCCOS scientists and technicians with an ongoing study of salt marsh carbon sequestration rates which resulted in a recent publication. This collaboration was made possible by NOAA's Environmental Cooperative Science Centerwhich links graduate students with NOAA scientists conducting compatible research and provides support for the student's research.
This work supports the NCCOS mission to provide science support in understanding the ecosystem services associated with natural infrastructure, and to understand how climate change may impact the Blue Carbon potential of coastal wetlands.