Postdoctoral Fellow

Daniel Zuleta

Postdoctoral Fellow


Daniel Zuleta is a Postdoctoral fellow working on tropical forest mortality with ForestGEO and NGEE–Tropics. His research has focused on understanding the spatial variation in drought-induced tree mortality and biomass dynamics, as well as assessing the interactions between the species’ drought tolerances and their spatial distributions in Amazon forests. As a postdoc fellow, Daniel aims to understand the mechanisms driving tropical forest mortality in order to develop mortality models that can be included in the FATES terrestrial ecosystem model and improve predictions of forest response to environmental changes. He will use long-term forest dynamics data from ForestGEO sites along with annual mortality censuses established by Gabriel Arellano to explore tree death modes and implications on stand carbon dynamics. He will additionally collect data on plant stress attributes and the response of trees to extreme climatic events to infer the physiological mechanisms of tree death.  Daniel coordinates the ForestGEO annual mortality and damage surveys, a pantropical program that aims to collect tree-level data related to potential mechanisms of mortality and forest biomass loss. He received his PhD in Ecology from Universidad Nacional de Colombia (Medellín) in 2019. Daniel is based at the ForestGEO headquarters at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington, DC.

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