Project Title: Restoring hydrology using runnels and salt marsh N biogeochemistry

Duration: Aug 2022-Jul 2024

Funding Source(s): Margaret A. Davidson Graduate Fellowship, NOAA

Lead Investigator / onsite-contact: Linda Deegan, Jen Bowen, Meagan Tyrrell

Affiliation: Woodwell Climate Research Center; Northeastern University


Project Description: Salt marshes are highly dynamic and variable systems providing many ecosystem services such as shoreline stabilization and nutrient filtration. However, because of their location within the tidal frame and proximity to human activity, they are vulnerable to a combination of anthropogenic and climatic disruptions. The objectives of this project are to understand the effects of altered hydrology via sea-level rise on the vulnerability of salt marsh productivity and N removal, and if restoration can enhance the resiliency to future changes. We will implement a relatively new restoration strategy called runnels, which are shallow channels designed to help drain standing water off the marsh surface and encourage vegetation. This project will examine unintended consequences of such restoration strategies on N cycling.