Mountain Ecology

SFS 3060

Mountain Ecology

4 credits

The kingdom of Bhutan lies in the eastern Himalayan typically characterized by extensive and numerous mountains and valleys, world’s highest peaks and a diversity of vegetation and wildlife. The mountain environments dominate Bhutan and shape both the culture and ecology of the land. Within this compact and mountainous country, are an extraordinary diversity of ecosystems and habitats; Bhutan and the Eastern Himalayan region are globally recognized as one of the hotpots for the biodiversity. In this course, we focus on mountains. What are the processes that form mountains and shape their ecological communities? We will begin by studying the physical environment of mountains — the geology and climate. Upon gaining an understanding of the physical environment, we will investigate the effect of elevation gradients on vegetation and highlight special features of mountain animals and the interaction between habitat and animal communities. How do mountains influence the distribution of biodiversity and how do scientists study ecology in mountainous environments? Finally, what are the threats to mountain regions in a rapidly changing world and what conservation tools are scientists and conservation biologists implementing to protect sensitive mountain environments and species.

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Himalayan Environment and Society in Transition

18 Weeks
18 Credits
Fall 2024
Sep 4 - Dec 15
Spring 2025
Jan 27 - May 9
Filling Fast