NEON and Kansas Ecoforecasting…..
Konza Prairie Biological Station has been recommended as one of the 20 potential Core Sites that will comprise the National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON). This continental scale network of ecological research and monitoring sites is currently completing the Final Design Review, which will lead to additional funding from the U.S. National Science Foundation for full development of the network. Once fully implemented, NEON will serve as a unique research platform for identifying and understanding critical continental-scale environmental drivers and ecological responses, and forecasting future states of ecological systems. Drs. John Blair (KSU) and Kris Krishtalka (KU) led a response to a Request for Information to NEON that ultimately led to the selection of Konza Prairie as the recommended core site for the Prairie Peninsula domain. The response included 37 researchers, 19 of whom are also receiving funding from the Ecoforecasting EPSCoR grant.
In addition to the selection of a potential NEON Core Site in Kansas, NEON has selected an experiment and observational network proposed by Walter Dodds (KSU EPSCoR PI) and other investigators. This long-term project is titled STREON (Stream Research and Observational Network) and would involve 10 stream experimental sites around the United States, with one of them sited in Kansas.
A parallel terrestrial experiment for NEON is also being planned; Dr. Tony Joern, also an Ecoforecasting investigator, is participating in the planning phase of this experiment.
One of the primary objectives of the Kansas Ecoforecasting project was to help prepare to compete for NEON funding.