Alberto Burquez-Montijo


Disciplines: Botany, Ecology
Regions: Alamos, Central Sonora, Gran Desierto
Chapter: Hermosillo



I am a population ecologist and desert botanist. I am mostly interested in numerical changes in populations, in the differentiation of populations along geographic ranges, and in the direct measurement of plant fitness. Along with many great students in my lab, I count organisms to understand demography, I assess reproduction to measure ecological fitness, and I measure the movements of pollinators and animal dispersers to understand gene flow. I am also interested in carbon dynamics of vegetation, invasive species, and conservation. The outstanding environmental variation and the sublime landscapes of NW Mexico and SW USA keeps me locked into this region. Its interior sea, the real islands and the isolated ranges forming Sky islands, the progression from the heart of the desert to the tropical thornscrub and, in the foothills of the Sierra Madre Occidental, to the tropical dry forests, provide the ideal setting for comparative studies using the natural experiments provided by this progression of biomes. While I perceive this setting as ideal for research hypotheses testing, it is also imperiled by non-sustainable development. In my work, I always try to link research, conservation, and the dissemination of knowledge to the general public. I am a proud Sonoran born in Hermosillo. I got my B Sc and M Sc at UNAM and my PhD at the University of Cambridge.