Response of Acacia tortilis to Elephant Browsing in Tarangire National Park, Tanzania: Possible Above-Ground Compensation?

Large herbivore browsing leads to above-ground compensatory growth for some species of Acacia trees, but strength and variation of the relationship are poorly understood. Acacia tortilis is a keystone species in East African savannas and experiences a wide range of browsing pressure. In this study, terminal bud scale scars were used to measure yearly shoot elongation in A. tortilis experiencing various levels of elephant browsing at three mesic sites in northern Tarangire National Park, Tanzania. 

Lessons From The Lab Bench

Undeniably, admissions committees prioritize a few select factors in considering applicants for scientific PhD programs. Foremost among them are previous research experience, matching interests with research groups, and undergraduate coursework. After three years of undergraduate research, I have received my fair share of advice on positioning myself for graduate school from colleagues, advisers, and friends. I would like to take a moment to articulate some of the most important insights, some of which I heard from others, but more often I had to find out for myself.