Dr Peter Moonlight


My long term research goal is to promote the integration of taxonomy and systematics into efforts to quantify the roles of tropical forests in global carbon cycling. I am particularly interested in how incorrect tree identifications in plots affect our ability to accurately measure and monitor the amount of carbon held within tropical forests, and the relationships among forest biodiversity and carbon cycling. I am a systematist by training, with expertise in the taxonomy and biogeography of the megadiverse genus Begonia in the Andes. I continue to work on the systematics of Andean Begonia, particularly focussing on Peruvian and Bolivian species.

My main responsibilities are:

  • Coordinating the collection of recensus data for permanent forest monitoring plots from dry forests and savannas in the American tropics.
  • Supporting and leading field campaigns to recensus dry biome plots.
  • Investigating the quantity and type of misidentifications in plots, and simulating their effect upon estimates of plot carbon storage and sequestration.
<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://environment.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>

Professional memberships

  • Fellow of the Linnean Society