Alonso Ramírez

Ph.D.Ecology, Institute of Ecology, University of Georgia, 2001. Director El Verde Field Station and Director of REU in Tropical Ecology and Conservation.

 Research Interests:

Structure and function of Urban and non-Urban Streams. Stream ecology; stream ecosystem responses to urbanization; ecology of aquatic insects and the role they play in ecosystems; taxonomy and systematic of aquatic insects, with emphasis on immature stages or larvae.

Courses Taught: 

Limnology (Grad, Undergrad), Aquatic Entomology (Grad, Undergrad), Urban Environments (Grad), Biostatistics (Grad), Topics in Modern Biology (Grad), Introduction to Ecology (Undergrad)

 Current projects:

  1. Stream ecology in the Luquillo Mountains, Puerto Rico

    Streams in Puerto Rico are short and steep, dominated by shrimp and fish species with diadromous life cycles.  In these ecosystems, aquatic insects play important roles processing leaf litter, consuming periphyton, and making energy available to upper trophic levels.  Our major research goal is to understand the role insects play in stream ecosystem processes. Our research is based at El Verde Field Station and is part of the Luquillo LTER program.

  2. Emergent landscape patterns in stream ecosystem processes resulting from groundwater/surface water interactions in Costa Rica

     In streams draining the Caribbean lowlands of Costa Rica we are studying how inputs of solute-rich groundwater associated with the volcanic landscape are affecting stream ecosystem function.  Solute-rich streams have interesting characteristics: they are nutrient rich, have a high buffering capacity against changes in pH, and have high microbial activity.  For further information on our research program visit the STREAMS project web site. Our major research goal is to understand how inputs of solute-rich groundwater modify stream ecosystems draining this tropical landscape. The STREAMS project is based at La Selva Biological Station, part of the Organization for Tropical Studies.

  3. Urban stream ecosystem structure and function in Puerto Rico

    Urbanization is rapidly increasing in tropical regions.  It is expected that by 2030 all tropical regions will have more urban than rural inhabitants. Stream degradation is large and conspicuous but is poorly understood in the tropics. Scientists and managers in tropical regions often must rely on information from non-tropical regions for guidance. Our major research goal is to understand how urbanization impacts stream ecosystems in Puerto Rico. Our research program is conducted within the framework of the ULTRA program and also the Luquillo LTER program.  

  4. Taxonomy and biodiversity of aquatic insects 
  5. One of the main limitations to advance our understanding of tropical stream ecosystems is our lack of information on the diversity and taxonomy of aquatic organisms.  Our major research goal is to advance our knowledge of tropical aquatic insects by creating tools that help us identify them and assess their diversity in tropical streams.

  6. Biodiversidad y función de ecosistemas riparinos en un paisaje fragmentado,  México 
  7. La deforestación sigue siendo uno de los mayores problemas de conservación en los trópicos.  El bosque mesófilo de montaña es uno de los más diversos de México.  Sin embargo, está altamente fraccionado y su función amenazada. Nuestro principal objetivo es entender el valor que tiene la zona ribereña en mantener la función y la diversidad de los arroyos del bosque mesófilo de montaña en México. El estudio es una colaboración con el INECOL, Veracruz, México. 

Recent publications: 

  1. Gutiérrez-Fonseca, P. E. 2015. Three new species of Anacroneuria klapálek (Plecoptera: Perlidae) from Panamá. Zootaxa 3957: 69-76. 
  2. Ramírez, A., M. Ardón, M. M. Douglas, & M. A. S. Graça. 2015. Tropical freshwater sciences: an overview of ongoing tropical research. Freshwater Sciences 34(2): 606-608.
  3. Ramírez, A. & P.E. Gutiérrez-Fonseca. 2014. Puerto Rico. En: Alonso-EguíaLis, P., Mora, J.M., Campbell, B. y M. Springer (eds). Diversidad, conservación y uso de los macroinvertebrados dulceacuícolas de México, Centroamérica, Colombia, Cuba y Puerto Rico. Instituto Mexicano de Tecnología del Agua, Jiutepec, Morelos, México.
  4. Muñoz-Erickson, T.A.; Lugo, A.E.; Meléndez-Ackerman, E.; Santiago-Acevedo, L.E.; Seguinot-Barbosa, J.; Méndez-Lázaro, P.; Hall, M.; Quintero, B.; Ramírez, A.; García-Montiel, D.; Pontius Jr., R.G.; Ramos-González, O.M.;
    Santiago-Bartolomei, R.; Verdejo-Ortíz, J.; Ortíz-Zayas, J.R.; Concepción, C.M.; Cusack, D.; Giusti, J.; McDowell, W.; Cruz-Torres, M.L.; Vallejo, J.; Cray, L.; Zimmerman, J.; Cuadrado-Landrau, V.; & Figueroa, M. 2014.
    Knowledge to Serve the City: Insights from an Emerging Knowledge-Action Network to Address Vulnerability and Sustainability in San Juan, Puerto Rico.  Cities and the Environment 7(1): Article 5.
  5. Rodríguez, N. & A. Ramírez. 2014. Protocolo de evaluación visual de quebradas para Puerto Rico. Universidad de Puerto Rico, recinto de Río Piedras. Versión Mayo 2014.

 

Contact Information:

aramirez@ramirezlab.net

http://www.ramirezlab.net/home

http://ites.upr.edu/