Principal Investigator

Dr.Matthew Cohen - I am interested in ecosystems ecology and watershed systems, with an emphasis on fluxes of water, carbon and nutrients within and between aquatic systems and their surroundings, and the role of biological processes in regulating those fluxes. My work is fundamentally based on systems analysis, inspired by my mentors Dr. Mark Brown and Dr. H.T. Odum.

Current Post-Doctoral Associates

Dr. Bobby Hensley - hydraulics and ecosystem metabolism in spring fed rivers; catchment signals in blackwater streams I received my bachelorís degree in Environmental Engineering from the University of Florida in 2006 and a Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Ecology in 2014. My research focus is using field-deployable sensors to measure stream solute delivery and nutrient spiraling at high frequencies. I am particularly interested in the stoichiometric coupling of stream metabolism and nutrient processing across elements.

Dr. Subodh Acharya - cellular automata modeling in the Everglades ridge-slough landscape; soil-moisture integration for ET estimation

Current Ph.D Students

Courtney Reijo (SFRC) - nutrient dynamics in benthic boxes

Lily Kirk (SNRE) - ecosystem respiration Lily graduated from the UF School of Forestry (B.S in Natural Resource Conservation), spent a decade exploring and teaching (M.A. in Curriculum & Instruction from Ole Miss), and is happy to come back to pursue a PhD. She studies ecosystem metabolism Ė specifically respiration pathways - in both spring-fed and blackwater rivers. Lily is grateful for the intellectual challenge and her awesome lab community. Outside of school, she used to pursue many hobbies, but now is a mother to a cheerful baby boy named Silas.

Carlos Quintero (SWSD) - Big Cypress patterned landscape

Josh received his bachelor's degree in biological sciences from Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ in May 2013. There, he worked on his senior honors thesis which examined methods to quantify sperm in female blue crabs (Callinectes sapidus). Subsequently, Josh worked for Atlantic Capes Fisheries in Cape May, NJ operating their oyster nursery and working on their oyster farm. Josh received his master's degree in wildlife ecology and conservation from the University of Florida in August 2016. For his research project he compiled fish occurrence and life history data to measure functional diversity for freshwater fish communities in major sub-basins of the southeastern US. During the summer of 2016 Josh worked as a crew leader on the Florida portion of the EPA's National Wetland Condition Assessment (NWCA). Through this experience he and the crew collected water quality, soil, hydrology, and plant community data to assess the ecological integrity of 63 wetlands across the state of Florida. Most recently, Josh began his doctoral program in August 2016 in the School of Forest Resources and Conservation at the University of Florida. His research interests include wetland and aquatic ecosystem connectivity, fish ecology, and wetland biodiversity functions. For his dissertation he plans to explore how isolated wetlands, with variable hydrology, structure biodiversity patterns across the US southeastern coastal plain.

Current M.S. Students

Jenny McBride (SNRE) - Jenny received her B.S. degree in Environmental Science from the University of Florida in 2014 and is currently majoring in Ecology with concentrations in Soil & Water Science and Wetlands & Water Resource Management. In 2013, she started working with the Ecohydrology Lab through the IFAS Research Internship program, providing field and lab assistance for Rachel Nifong's research on autotrophic stoichiometry and ecosystem metabolism in Florida springs. Her graduate research explores the physical, chemical, and biological controls on submerged aquatic vegetation over an annual cycle in spring-fed rivers. Improved understanding of the environmental interactions and the drivers contributing to primary producer community structure and function is integral to effectively managing spring ecosystems.

Paul Decker (SFRC) - forest fertilization and catchment response times Paul is a Masters student in Forest Resources and Conservation with a focus in hydrologic modeling. His work mainly focuses on modeling rainfall-runoff relationships in Florida as well as estimating travel time distributions within catchments. This work uses a combination of field-collected data with computational modeling in order to understand how water moves through a watershed and the timeline in which this movement takes place. Much of this modeling is valuable to landowners and managers alike because it allows us to understand how long some solutes and contaminants may reside within a catchment until their eventual deposition into surface water bodies. Paul holds two Bachelor degrees from Virginia Tech in Forestry and Watershed Management and has minors in soil science and wetland science. Much of Paulís background is rooted in forestry and has expanded this interest into his own hobbies. Paul is an avid enthusiast of local woods and trees where he mills his own lumber and builds custom furniture pieces from both slabs and traditional lumber. Paul is originally from Gainesville, Florida where he enjoys cycling, kayaking, hiking, and woodworking.

Current Undergraduate Students

Julianne Chechanover - forest fertilization and catchment response times Julianne joined the lab in the Fall of 2015 after participating in the Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) program at Purdue University. She is currently studying Biological Engineering with a concentration in Land and Water Resources Engineering, and a minor in Sustainability in the Built Environment. Her research interests include landscape dynamics, sediment transport, and biogeomorphology in springs ecosystems. Julianne is also part of the University Scholars Program, a competitive program that supports undergraduate students to pursue individual research projects at the University of Florida. Her project is on understanding the relationships between sediment, vegetation, and flow characteristics in the Ichetucknee River.

Lab Manager

Kenyon Watkins - Water Yield

Former Post-Doctoral Associates

Dr. Andrea Albertin - food-web ecology, algal ecology, natural abundance isotopes in springs

Dr. Daniel McLaughlin - hydrology and surface morphology in isolated wetlands [now faculty at Virginia Tech]

Dr. David Kaplan - modeling to couple hydrology, microtopography and peat accretion in the Everglades [now faculty at UF]

Dr. Jim Heffernan [now faculty at Duke University]

Dr. Sanjay Lamsal [now at Monsanto]

Dr. Jason Evans [now faculty at Stetson University]

Former Senior Biological Sientist

Larry Korhnak - Springs, and Everything Else

(check out his astonishing photos) Most of the awesome photographs on this site were taken by him as well.

Brett Caudill - Forest Fertilization, Big Cypress

Former Students

Nelson Anderson (SFRC) - algal and submerged plant dynamics in Florida's springs. Nelson now works at St.Johns River Water Management District.

Danielle Watts (SNRE) - Carbon dynamics of the Everglades patterned peatland [now a post-doc at UCBerkeley]

Dina Liebowitz (SNRE) - Top-Down Control of Algal Proliferation in Florida's Karst Springs [now a researcher with CALOST, an ocean research and advocacy organization]

Bobby Hensley (SNRE) - Hydraulic Controls on Nitrogen Retention in Spring Fed Rivers [now a post-doc at UF]

Rachel Nifong (SNRE) - On the Relationships Between the Stoichiometry of Whole Ecosystem Metabolism and Primary Producers [now a post-doc at UMaryland - Frostburg]

Yuan Jing (SNRE) - Early Warning Indicators of Peat Pattern Loss in the Ridge Slough Mosaic [now a post-doc with UNDP]

Joseph Delesantro (SFRC) - Hydrologic Controls on Micro-Topography Development in a Riparian Wetland Forest [now senior technician at Duke University]

Jake Diamond (SFRC) - Catchment solute export patters [now a PhD student at Virginia Tech]

W. Justin Vogel (MS, SWSD) - Lake Okeechobee sediment mapping [now in law school]

Chad Foster (MS, SNRE) - working on willingness-to-pay evaluation of water quality in Ichetucknee Springs [now a senior technician at NEON]

Lizzy Deimeke (MS, SFRC) - ecosystem services and bioassessment in isolated wetlands [now an Instructor at Santa Fe College]

Lauren Long (MS, SNRE) - Sources of Phosphorus to Newnans Lake, Florida [now a Fulbright Scholar in New Zealand]

Current M.S., Ph.D. and Post-Doctoral Openings Available

Our Study Settings


Forest Streams

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Springs and Karst Rivers

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Isolated Wetlands

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Big Cypress and Everglades

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Location and Contact Info

Email:  -  Phone: 352.846.3490  -  Office Address: 328 Newins Ziegler Hall, Gainesville FL 32611-0410