Every volcanic ash cloud has a silver lining!

And better posting late than never…..

What better way to kick off my first post than with a personal scientific study of particular novelty.

In May 2014, my publication detailing research characterising the pioneer microbial colonists of the basaltic Icelandic Fimmvörðuháls (aka Eyjafjallajökull) lava flows was published in Microbial Ecology (DOI 10.1007/s00248-014-0432-3). Using a clone library approach targeting bacterial 16S ribosomal RNA genes, we reveal that these pioneer communities are distinctive, primarily comprising Betaproteobacteria affiliated with known iron and sulfur oxidizers (e.g. Thiobacillus) and nitrogen fixers (e.g. Herbaspirillum). These low diversity communities contrast with those of older basaltic Icelandic lava flows, as described in the publication. For further details, please see the Fimmvörðuháls page.

Details regarding this study have also been posted as a blog on the website of John Stevenson and may be viewed here