Benjamin Sullivan


Photo of Benjamin Sullivan

Assistant Professor

Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Science
University of Nevada/Mail Stop 186
1664 N. Virginia Street
Reno,  Nevada   89557

Office: (775) 784-6374
Email: bsullivan@cabnr.unr.edu
Building: Max Fleischmann Agriculture,  Office 132A
Personal Web: http://sullivanlab.weebly.com/

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EDUCATION
B.S. University of Montana, 2002
M.S. Northern Arizona University, 2007
Ph.D. Northern Arizona University, 2011

ACADEMIC & RESEARCH INTEREST

Please visit my lab website

REPRESENTATIVE PUBLICATIONS

Audio/Visual
Carbon Sequestration Monitoring Equipment Demo Sullivan, B and Drew, M 2016, Vimeo.com
Journals
Leaf cutter ants engineer large nitrous oxide hot spots in tropical forests. Soper, F.M., B.W. Sullivan, B.B. Osborne, A.N. Shaw, L. Phillipot, C.C. Cleveland. 2019, Proceedings of the Royal Society B, 286: 20182504.
Biogeochemical recuperation of lowland tropical forest during succession Sullivan, B. W., R.L. Nifong, M.K. Nasto, S. Alvarez-Clare, C. Dencker, F.M. Soper, K.T. Shoemaker, F. Yoko Yashida, J. Zaragoza-Castells, E.A. Davidson and C.C. Cleveland. 2019, Ecology, e02641. https://doi.org/10.1002/ecy.2641
Resource limitation modulates the fate of dissimilated nitrogen in a dual-pathway Actinobacterium. Vuono, D.C., R.W. Read, J. Hemp, B.W. Sullivan, J.A. Arnone III, I. Neveux, B. Blank, C. Staub, E. Loney, D. Miceli, M. Winkler, R. Chakraborty, D.A. Stahl, J.J.Grzymski. 2019, Frontiers in Microbiology, 10, 3 doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2019.00003
Charcoal increases microbial activity in eastern Sierra Nevada forest. Carter, Z., Sullivan, B. W., Qualls, R. G., Blank, R., Schmidt, C., Verburg, P. 2018, Forests 92 (3): 93, DOI:10.3390/f9020093.
Actinorhizal species influence plant and soil nitrogen in semiarid shrub-dominated ecosystems in the western Great Basin Freund, S.M., F.M. Soper, S.R. Poulson, P.C. Selmants, B.W. Sullivan 2018, Journal of Arid Environments 157, 48-56
Legume Abundance Along Successional And Rainfall Gradients In Neotropical Forests Gei, M., D. Rozendaal, L. Poorter, F. Bongers, J. Sprent, M. Garner, T.M. Aide, J. Andrade, P. Balavanera, J. Becknell, P.H. Brancalion, G.A. Cabral, R. César, R. Chazdon, R. Cole, G. Colletta, B. de Jong, J.S. Denslow, D. Dent, S. DeWalt, J. Dupuy, S. Durán, M. do Espírito Santo, G. Fernandes, J. Ferrera Nunes, B. Finegan, V.G. Moser, J. Hall, J.L. Hernandez-Stefanoni, A. Junqueira, D. Kennard, E. Lebrija-Trejos, S. Lecher, M. Lohbeck, E. Marin-Spiotta, M. Martinez-Ramos, J. Meave, D. Menge, F. 2018, Nature Ecology and Evolution 2, 11014-1111
Deconstruction of a plant-arthropod community reveals influential plant traits with nonlinear effects on arthropod assemblages. Harrison, J., Philbin, C., Gompert, Z., Forister, G., Hernandez, L., Sullivan, B. W., Wallace, I., Beltran, L., Dodson, C., Francis, J., Schlageter, A., Shelef, O., Yoon, S., Forister, M. L. 2018, Functional Ecology DOI: 10.1111/1365-2435.13060.
Building flux capacity: Citizen scientists increase resolution of soil greenhouse gas fluxes Reed, C.C., J. Winters, S.C. Hart, R. Hutchinson, M. Chandler, G. Venicx, B.W. Sullivan 2018, PLoS ONE 13(7) e0198997.
Regime shift in the littoral ecosystem of volcanic lake Atitlán in Central America: combined role of stochastic event and invasive plant species Rejmankova, E., B.W. Sullivan, J. Aldad, J. Snyder, S. Castle, F. Morales. 2018, Freshwater Biology 63(9), 1088-1106
Remotely sensed canopy nitrogen correlates with nitrous oxide emissions in a lowland tropical rainforest Soper, F.M., B.W. Sullivan, M.K. Nasto, B.B. Osborne, D. Bru, C. Balzotti, P. Taylor, G. Asner, A.R. Townsend, L. Philippot, S. Porder, C.C. Cleveland 2018, Ecology 99(9), 2080-2089.
Restoring dryland old fields with native shrubs and grasses: Does facilitation and seed source matter? Uselman SM, Davison J, Baughman OW, Sullivan BW, Miller WW, Leger EA 2018, PloS One, 3 (10), e0205760
A framework for evaluating estimates of symbiotic nitrogen fixation in forests Winbourne J., M. Harrison, B.W. Sullivan, S. Alvarez-Clare, S. Rafaela Lins, L. Martinelli, M.K. Nasto, D. Piotto, S. Rolim, M. Wong, S. Porder 2018, The American Naturalist 192(5) 618-629.
Nutrient limitation of soil microbial activity during the earliest stages of ecosystem development. Castle, S. C., Sullivan, B. W., Knelman, J., Hood, E., Nemergut, D. R., Schmidt, S. K., Cleveland, C. C. 2017, Oecologia 185: 513
Climate, Topography, and Canopy Chemistry Exert Hierarchical Control Over Soil N Cycling in a Neotropical Lowland Forest Osborne, B. B., Nasto, M. K., Asner, G. P., Balzotti, C. S., Cleveland, C. C., Sullivan, B. W., Taylor, P. G., Townsend, A. R., Porder, S. 2017, Ecosystems 20 (6): 1089-1103.
Temperature and rainfall interact to control carbon cycling in tropical forests. Taylor, P.G., Cleveland, C. C., Wieder, W. R., Sullivan, B. W., Doughty, C. E., Dobrowski, S., Townsend, A.R. 2017, Ecology Letters 20 (6): 779-788.
A comparison of plot-based, satellite and Earth system model estimates of tropical NPP. Cleveland, C. C., Taylor, P., Chadwick, K. D., Doughty, C., Malhi, Y., Smith, W. K., Sullivan, B. W., Wieder, W. R., Townsend, A. R. 2015, Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 29(5), 626–644.
Proximate controls on semiarid soil greenhouse gas fluxes across 3 million years of soil development. Sullivan, B. W., Nasto, M. K., Hart, S. C., Hungate, B. A. 2015, Biogeochemistry, 125(3), 375-391.
Interactions among nitrogen fixation and soil phosphorus acquisition strategies in lowland tropical rain forests

Paradoxically, symbiotic dinitrogen (N2) fixers are abundant in nitrogen (N)-rich, phosphorus (P)-poor lowland tropical rain forests. One hypothesis to explain this pattern states that N2 fixers have an advantage in acquiring soil P by producing more N-rich enzymes (phosphatases) that mineralise organic P than non-N2 fixers. We assessed soil and root phosphatase activity between fixers and non-fixers in two lowland tropical rain forest sites, but also addressed the hypothesis that arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) colonisation (another P acquisition strategy) is greater on fixers than non-fixers. Root phosphatase activity and AM colonisation were higher for fixers than non-fixers, and strong correlations between AM colonisation and N2 fixation at both sites suggest that the N–P interactions mediated by fixers may generally apply across tropical forests. We suggest that phosphatase enzymes and AM fungi enhance the capacity of N2 fixers to acquire soil P, thus contributing to their high abundance in tropical forests.


Nasto, M.K., S. Alvarez-Clare, Y. Lekberg, B.W. Sullivan, A.R. Townsend, C.C. Cleveland. 2014, Ecology Letters 17(10): 1282–1289.
Assessing nutrient limitation in complex forested ecosystems: Alternatives to large-scale fertilization experiments. Sullivan, B.W., S. Alvarez-Clare, S.C. Castle, S. Porder, S. Reed, L. Schreeg, A. Townsend, C.C. Cleveland. 2014, Ecology 95 (3). 668-681
Spatially robust estimates of biological nitrogen (N) fixation imply substantial human alteration of the tropical N cycle. Sullivan, B.W., W.K. Smith, A.R. Townsend, M.K. Nasto, S.C. Reed, R. Chazdon, C.C. Cleveland 2014, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA 111 (22), 8101-8106.
Does dissolved organic carbon regulate biological methane oxidation in semiarid soils? Sullivan, B.W., P.C. Selmants, S.C. Hart. 2013, Global Change Biology 19 (7), 2149-2157.
Evaluation of mechanisms controlling the priming of soil carbon along a substrate age gradient. Sullivan, B.W., S.C. Hart. 2013, Soil Biology and Biochemistry 58, 293-301.
Effects of water additions on pinyon pine (Pinus edulis) water relations, growth, and mortality across a three million year old soil age gradient in northern Arizona, USA. Looney, C.L., B.W. Sullivan, J.M. Kane, T.E. Kolb, S.C. Hart. 2012, Plant and Soil 357, 89-102.