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David Barnard
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Dr. David Barnard (Dave)

Research Agroecologist


Water Management Research Unit
2150 Centre Avenue, Bldg D, Suite 320
Fort Collins, CO 80526

PHONE: (970) 492-7404
FAX: (970) 492-7408


Research  Degrees  Publications

Research Interests:

My research interests lie at the intersection of agriculture, ecology, and hydrology. I am especially interested in drought and the “life-cycle” of water in the western United States including water resource variability from mountain snowpack and rainfall and its impacts on agricultural production, ecohydrological processes, and surface mass and energy exchange. I use a variety of empirical techniques from my background in plant physiology, micrometeorology, and remote sensing. I also use various process-based models at spatial-scales ranging from the individual plant, to agroecosystems, watersheds, and the continent.


Ph.D. Plant Physiology and Micrometeorology 2014 Colorado State University, CO, USA
M.S. Forest Physiology and Ecology 2010 Oregon State University, OR, USA
B.S. Horticulture 2006 University of Florida, FL, USA

Postdoctoral Training:

2016-2019: Great Basin rangeland restoration ecology. US Geological Survey, Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center.

2014-2016: Montane and subalpine ecosystem ecology, snow hydrology. Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research and Boulder Creek Critical Zone Observatory, University of Colorado, Boulder.



  1. Shriver R.K., C.M. Andrews, R.S. Arkle, D.M. Barnard, M.C. Duniway, M.J. Germino, D.S. Pilliod, D.A. Pyke, J.L. Welty, J.B. Bradford. 2019. Transient population dynamics impede landscape-level dryland restoration. Ecology Letters (in press).
  2. Barnard, D.M., M.J. Germino, D.S. Pilliod, C. Applestein, B.E. Davidson, M.R. Fisk, R.S. Arkle. 2019. Can’t see the random forest for the decision trees; selecting predictive models as decision support tools in ecological restoration. Restoration Ecology (in press).
  3. Barnard, D.M., M.J. Germino, D. Pyke, D Pilliod, M. Duniway, J. Bradford, R Arkle, J Welty, B. Shriver. 2019. Soil characteristics are associated with the recovery of big sagebrush canopy structure after disturbance. Ecosphere (in press).
  4. Davidson, B.E., M.J. Germino, D.M. Barnard, C. Applestein, M.R. Fisk. 2019. Landscape and organismal factors affecting sagebrush-seedling transplant survival after megafire restoration? Restoration Ecology (in press).
  5. Barnard, D.M., J.F. Knowles, H.R. Barnard, M.L. Goulden, J. Hu, M.E. Litvak, N.P. Molotch. 2018. Reevaluating growing season length controls on net ecosystem production in evergreen conifer forests. Nature Scientific Reports, 2018(8).
  6. Germino, M.J*., D.M. Barnard*, B.E. Davidson, R.S. Arkle, D.S. Pilliod, M.R. Fisk, C. Applestein. Thresholds and hotspots for shrub restoration following a heterogeneous megafire. Landscape Ecology, 33(7): 1177-1194.
  7. Barnard, D.M., H.R. Barnard, and N.P. Molotch. 2016. Topoclimate effects on growing season length and montane conifer growth in complex terrain. Environmental Research Letters, 12(6): 064003.
  8. Barnard, D.M. and W.L. Bauerle. Seasonal variation in canopy aerodynamics and the sensitivity of transpiration estimates to wind velocity in broadleaved deciduous species. Journal of Hydrometeorology, 17(12): 3029-3043.
  9. Molotch, N.P., D.M. Barnard, and S.P. Burns, T.H. Painter. Characterizing spatio-temporal variations in snow pack microstructure under a subalpine forest canopy. Water Resources Research, 52(9): 7513-7522.
  10. Winchell, T., D.M. Barnard, R.K. Monson, S.P. Burns, and N.P. Molotch. 2016. Earlier snowmelt reduces atmospheric carbon uptake in mid-latitude subalpine forests. Geophysical Research Letters, 43(15): 8160-8168.
  11. Barnard, D.M. and W.L. Bauerle. 2015. Species-specific irrigation scheduling with a spatially explicit biophysical model: a comparison to substrate moisture sensing with insight into simplified physiological parameterization. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 214-215: 48-59.
  12. Bauerle, T.L., W.L. Bauerle, M. Goebel, and D.M. Barnard. 2013. Root system distribution influences substrate moisture measurements in containerized ornamental tree species. Hort Technology, 23(6): 754-759.
  13. Barnard, D.M. and W.L. Bauerle. 2013. The implications of minimum stomatal conductance on modeling water flux in forest canopies. Journal of Geophysical Research – Biogeosciences, 118(3): 1322-1333.
  14. Bauerle, W.L., A.B. Daniels, and D.M. Barnard. 2013. Carbon and water flux responses to physiology by environment interactions: a sensitivity analysis of variation in climate on photosynthetic and stomatal parameters. Climate Dynamics, 42: 2539-2554.
  15. Daniels, A.B., D.M. Barnard, P.L. Chapman, and W.L. Bauerle. 2012. Optimizing substrate moisture measurements in containerized nurseries. HortScience, 47: 98-104.
  16. Barnard, D.M., B. Lachenbruch, K.A. McCulloh, P. Kitin, and F.C. Meinzer. 2012. Do ray cells provide a pathway for radial water movement in the stems of conifer trees? American Journal of Botany, 100(2): 322-331.
  17. Barnard, D.M., F.C. Meinzer, B.L. Lachenbruch, K.A. McCulloh, D.M. Johnson, and D. R. Woodruff. 2011. Climate-related trends in sapwood biophysical properties in two conifers: avoidance of hydraulic dysfunction through coordinated adjustments in xylem efficiency, safety and capacitance. Plant, Cell & Environment, 34: 643-654.