Compiling Data from Previous Burn Years

For the past several weeks, I have been busily going through tons of data from previous years in an effort to isolate only the data I need for my project. As a reminder, I’m looking at how prairie fire changes the mating scene and mate availability for Echinacea. I am using data from 1996, 1998, 2007, 2009, 2012, 2014, and 2015. With the exception of 2015 when no burn occurred, part of Staffanson Prairie Preserve underwent a controlled burn during each of these years.

From a file containing all seed set data for all plants that the Echinacea Project has ever collected, I extracted data for plants that flowered in both 2015 and at least one of the previous burn years. I ended up with 26 plants that met this description, and I will compare reproductive success of each of these plants on an individual basis in burn years compared to non-burn years.

To start out, I created some histograms of the data to get a quick insight into patterns that might be present. In order to roughly quantify the quality of the mating scene for a given plant, I calculated outcross mating potential (OMP), which takes into account the distances to the 6 nearest flowering neighbors. A higher value indicates a greater density of available mates. The second set of histograms shows seed set, with a higher number indicating greater reproductive success. While I will need to conduct statistical analyses to get a better understanding of what these data mean, initial impressions indicate that both the mating scene and reproductive success may be better in burn years.

Screen Shot 2016-04-26 at 12.15.29 AM Screen Shot 2016-04-26 at 12.15.42 AM


Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>