Welcome to the Capps Lab at the University of Georgia!
Freshwater is often considered the most important natural resource, but freshwater resources are threatened by anthropogenic activities, including habitat degradation, urbanization, eutrophication, and the introduction of exotic species. Many of these negative impacts are expected to be exacerbated in response to global climate change. To mitigate the effects of anthropogenic activities and preserve freshwater resources and ecosystem function, it is essential to understand how these activities affect aquatic communities and ecosystems.
Research in our lab is dedicated to understanding how anthropogenic activities alter community structure and ecosystem processes (e.g., productivity, decomposition, and biogeochemical cycling) in freshwater ecosystems. Much of our research has focused on the impacts of consumers on basal food resources, community structure, and nutrient dynamics in streams and wetlands. We attempt to view our work through a social-ecological lens, acknowledging the powerful impacts that public policy and economic considerations can have on the quality and quantity of freshwater resources, the abundance and diversity of aquatic organisms, and the function of freshwater ecosystems. In an attempt to translate scientific knowledge to actionable outcomes, we actively work with community groups and local, state, and federal employees to develop programs that integrate stakeholder concerns into our research planning.