This last part of August was spent on fieldwork in the region of Kangerlussuaq (Søndre Strømfjord) in western Greenland to sample plants for my future postdoctoral project on finding out more on the evolutionary history of the Greenlandic flora.
The aim of this project is to study the routes and timings of floral colonisation into and within Greenland to place Arctic floral biogeography more firmly into the contexts of the northern landmasses and the glaciation history of Greenland itself. In addition, I hope to gain a better understanding of speciation processes of plants in polar regions (e.g. effects of past climate, bottlenecks, asexual reproduction, polyploidy and hybridisation). For this project I will use a combination of fresh and herbarium material, combined with population genetic and molecular dating methods.
The project will be based at the Natural History Museum of Denmark and the University of Copenhagen, and is funded by the Carlsberg Foundation.
The project will start part-time and in the meanwhile I will continue to work at the British Antarctic Survey as well.
Hi! I am Elise Biersma, an evolutionary biologist studying polar plants and microbes.