About This Project
The Tongass National Forest in Alaska contains both damaged and undamaged caves. These caves are homes to a bacteria-rich mineraloid formation called moonmilk. Microbial communities play critical roles in maintaining ecosystem stability. This motivated our team of cavers and cave explorers to travel to remote field sites this summer to collect and analyze samples and attempt to answer the question: Does human-caused damage to cave formations change the moonmilk ecosystem?