Megan R. King
Master’s Degree Student, Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Natural Resources, Rutgers University
Co-Advised by Dr. Myla Aronson and Dr. Lena Struwe
AS. Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Bergen Community College (2014)
BS. Ecology, Evolution and Natural Resources, Rutgers University (2017)
I currently work for Rutgers University as the Assistant Curator in Education and Outreach and for NJDEP in the Office of Natural Lands Management. Much of my experience is in natural history collections, primarily herbaria, but I am also a field botanist of the sort. I thoroughly enjoy working amongst both the living and the dead… PLANTS. I have always had an interest in the natural world, but the areas that interest me most are invasive species, birds, urban plants, and plants that are rare and endangered. I have spent much of the last few years supervising many wonderful undergraduate students in the Chrysler Herbarium. After completing my research, I plan to continue my career in natural history collections, while maintaining active research with the use of collections.
In my free time you’ll either find me with my eyes glued to a pair of binoculars looking at some feathery object in the distance, paddling my kayak until my arms feel like spaghetti, or maybe just some simple hiking where whoever has journeyed with me will turn around and realize I am stopped 100 feet behind looking at some object on the ground.
Research Focus: Urban plant trait changes in response to climate change and urbanization
Urban plant trait change across time, urban density gradients and latitude.
My research focus on measuring plant traits across cities along the eastern seaboard of the United States. This field-truthing can fill gaps in phenological data and open the doors to further research regarding impacts that urbanization and climate change have on urban plant species. While the effects of a warming climate on plant phenology, specifically earlier leaf out and flowering are well established, much less is known about the plant growth in response to stressors of their natural environment. My work will not only include data collection in the field, but also vouchering of specimens to be later compared to historic herbarium records to analyze changes over time as well.