betsey boughton

Elizabeth “Betsey” Boughton, Ph.D.

Director of Agroecology, Senior Research Biologist

Broadly, my research program is focused on environmental and economic sustainability of ranches in the headwaters of the Everglades and is underpinned by basic and applied research in Ecosystem services, Ecology, Biogeochemistry, and Hydrology.


Elizabeth “Betsey” Boughton, PhD

The overarching research goal is to utilize Buck Island Ranch as a real-world laboratory to quantify the biodiversity and ecosystem services provided by working ranches. Our work provides the fundamental understanding of how we can maintain and improve ecosystem services, minimize tradeoffs, all while sustaining an economically productive agroecosystem. My research program is focused on: 1) the quantification of multiple ecosystem services provided by working ranches, 2) understanding how ranch management practices affects multiple ecosystem services and disservices, and 3) the drivers and threats to ecosystem services, such as invasive species and climate change. The overarching goal of our work is to discover innovative science-based solutions for sustainable agriculture that is profitable, delivers multiple ecosystem services to society, and reduces negative environmental impacts.

I am actively engaged in multiple national and global science networks including the USDA Long-term Agroecosystem Research (LTAR) network, Nutrient Network (nutnet), Disturbance, Resource Addition, and Recovery (Dragnet), Phenocam Network, Grazing Exclosure Consortium, and Community Responses to Resource Experiments (CORRE These networks have allowed the Agroecology program to scale up the place-based research and provide data from subtropical grasslands to large national and global scale network analyses.

Recent Publications: