SNAPSHOT: A New Way to Track Biodiversity

D-briefBy Lacy SchleyFeb 22, 2019 4:04 AM


Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

(Credit: Ran Wang) A team of scientists at the University of Alberta used an image spectrometer — essentially a specialized camera that captures light waves invisible to the naked eye — to create this technicolor shot of plants in the Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve in Minnesota. The different colors show differences in plants’ functions, which, the team suggests in a paper published last year in Nature Ecology & Evolution, could be a way to illustrate and track biodiversity. Red represents sun-induced fluorescence, when a plant releases extra solar energy it doesn’t need for photosynthesis; green indicates the light-absorbing pigment chlorophyll; and blue marks a plant that is under stress, which can affect its ability to perform photosynthesis.

1 free article left
Want More? Get unlimited access for as low as $1.99/month

Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

1 free articleSubscribe
Discover Magazine Logo
Want more?

Keep reading for as low as $1.99!


Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

More From Discover
Recommendations From Our Store
Shop Now
Stay Curious
Our List

Sign up for our weekly science updates.

To The Magazine

Save up to 40% off the cover price when you subscribe to Discover magazine.

Copyright © 2023 Kalmbach Media Co.