Angela Gonzalez

Angela is first-generation, non-traditional college student. She graduated with a major in geography and a minor in evolutionary biology and ecology. She received an Associates of Arts from Front Range Community College with Latin honors, and is a member of Latino Excellence Achievement and Development Series, Phi Theta Kappa, Phi Beta Kappa, National Society of Leadership and Success, and the McNair Scholars Program. Angela's research interests include disturbances in forest and montane systems, as well as conservation and management of ecological systems. Her hope is to guide forest management and policy decisions in the future. She is currently working towards her Master’s in Forest Science at Colorado State University. Her current research examines resource allocation tradeoffs in Ponderosa Pine. She hopes to continue on to her PhD and work in academia.

Research: Climate-driven shifts in tree mortality in the subalpine forests of Colorado
Rates of tree mortality are increasing around the world. Recent extreme droughts and warming temperatures have increased tree stress, making them more susceptible to lethal pathogens and insects. To examine how recent warming is affecting subalpine forests in the Colorado Front Range, we related climate variability to conifer tree mortality rates. Conifer mortality rates were calculated for four subalpine tree species using data from 43 permanent forest plots, including > 8,000 tagged trees, monitored from 1982-2019. During the 37-year study period, tree mortality rates nearly doubled, and this time period was associated with warmer temperatures and increasing water deficits. Continued increases in tree mortality may affect critical services for humans from forests, such as the amount of landscape covered by forest and carbon storage.

Research Faculty Mentor:

Dr. Tom Veblen, Distinguished Professor