Aerobiology over Antarctica – a new initiative for atmospheric ecology

David Pearce, Irina Alekhina, Aleks Terauds, Annick Wilmotte, Antonio Quesada, Arwyn Edwards, Aurelien Dommergue, Birgit Sattler, Byron Adams, Catarina Magalhães, Wan-Loy Chu, Maggie Lau, Craig Cary, David J. Smith, Diana Wall, Gabriela Eguren, Gwynneth Matcher, James A. Bradley, Jean-Pierre de Vera, Josef ElsterKevin Hughes, Lewis Cuthbertson, Liane Benning, Nina Gunde-Cimerman, Peter Convey, Soon Gyu Hong, Steve Pointing, Vivian Pellizari, Warwick Vincent

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32 Citations (Scopus)
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The role of aerial dispersal in shaping patterns of biodiversity remains poorly understood, mainly due to a lack of coordinated efforts in gathering data at appropriate temporal and spatial scales. It has been long known that the rate of dispersal to an ecosystem can significantly influence ecosystem dynamics, and that aerial transport has been identified as an important source of biological input to remote locations. With the considerable effort devoted in recent decades to understanding atmospheric circulation in the south-polar region, a unique opportunity has emerged to investigate the atmospheric ecology of Antarctica, from regional to continental scales. This concept note identifies key questions in Antarctic microbial biogeography and the need for standardized sampling and analysis protocols to address such questions. A consortium of polar aerobiologists is established to bring together researchers with a common interest in the airborne dispersion of microbes and other propagules in the Antarctic, with opportunities for comparative studies in the Arctic.
Original languageEnglish
JournalFrontiers in Microbiology
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - 16 Feb 2016


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