Dr. Angela Ebeling
Associate Professor of Biology
- B.S., Chemistry, Wisconsin Lutheran College, 1999
- M.S., Soil Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2001
- Ph.D., Soil Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2007
- Post-doctoral Researcher, Ecosystem Sciences, University of California-Berkeley, 2008
- Phosphorus in the environment (soil fertility and water quality)
- Managing organic wastes such as biosolids (soil fertility and water quality)
- Reusing materials such as water treatment residuals to reduce pollution in runoff
- Understanding heavy metals in organic wastes
- Using constructed wetlands to remediate wastewater
- BIO 124 - Plant Science
- BIO 310 - Biostatistics
- BIO 324 - Botany
- BIO 401/402 - Research Strategies
- ESS 182 - Environmental Science
- Other: During a semester in China I taught conversational English and global scientific communication.
- Associate Professional Soil Scientist
- Association for Women Soil Scientists
- Soil Science Society of America
- Coordinate faculty candidate interviews
- Curriculum Committee
- Environmental Club Advisor
- Environmental Science Workshop
- Faculty advisor for student residence hall
- Pathways Milwaukee Summer Program Instructor
- Reviewer for journals (e.g. Pedosphere, Catena)
- Evangelism caller
- Library volunteer
- Mandarin language student (completed 7 semesters of college level Mandarin instruction including a semester in China)
- Summer Bible School teacher
- Ultimate Frisbee
While soil science is my passion, my research interests have diversified over the last decade. Because I grew up on a small dairy farm I think I’ve always had an interest in the environment and water quality. Soil fertility as related to phosphorus content in soil and from various amendments is where my research expertise experience began. I continue to investigate phosphorus availability in the soil through greenhouse and soil incubation experiments looking at the phosphorus added through various amendments such as manures and biosolids. Due to my interest in the sustainability of various ecosystems, and because I now live in an urban environment, I have started investigating the ecosystem services that can be offered by turfgrass systems compared to butterfly garden (native forbs) systems, switchgrass (bioenergy grass) systems, and corn (rowcrop) systems. In the paragraphs below you can see examples of current research with which students can collaborate with me, as well as examples of past research projects.
These projects involve lab work that familiarizes students with analytical and instrumental chemistry techniques. Learning concepts in biology, chemistry, physics, and soils is important to understanding the processes involved and will prepare students for a variety of careers in science.
Current Research Projects
Biosolids, a by-product of waste water treatment, can be used as a soil amendment to provide nutrients. Farmers should apply biosolids and manures to provide adequate amounts of nutrients for crops and still protect water quality by avoiding over-application. Research has shown that manures and biosolids have different phosphorus availability in soil, however little research has been conducted to understand differences between the different types of biosolids. This research uses biosolids from six different southeastern Wisconsin wastewater treatment plants and different native Wisconsin soils to conduct incubations that investigate these phosphorus availability differences. The goal will be to determine phosphorus solubility factors that will allow biosolids to be included in the Wisconsin Phosphorus Index.
In this research, students will be able to work directly with soil samples and learn a variety of lab skills. They will experience real life environmental research activities such as drying, grinding, and weighing soils; using instruments to measure the levels of various nutrients and other important soil qualities; and putting the results together in a way that is meaningful for farmers and University of Wisconsin extension specialists. They will also have the opportunity learn scientific writing skills by summarizing their results and potentially be able to present their data at local, regional, and national meetings or conferences.
Long-Term Ecosystem Services Trial
Below is an abstract that a student prepared for and which was later accepted to the 1st annual Wisconsin Earth and Water Student Conference. It explains the long-term ecosystem services trial and some of the specific measurements planned. This project is on-going and has evolved over the last three years to include butterfly garden plants (native forb system) and switchgrass (native bioenergy grass system) along with the turfgrass and corn systems. This long-term trial is set up to be able to allow students to study many different aspects of these ecosystems, depending on their interests.
Student abstract: "As carbon emissions and air and water quality issues become more widespread due to a growing population, people are searching for cost effective solutions to curb the effects of urbanization on soil, water and air pollution. One management option for reducing pollution due to run-off is establishing rain gardens, but little is known about their effectiveness sequestering carbon or reducing local temperatures through shading and transpiration. The goal of this long-term study is to compare nutrient transformations, carbon sequestration, and temperature mitigation in three ecosystems (rain garden, turf grass, and field site). In this study we will use an on-site rain garden (less than 10 years old), an adjacent turf plot, as well as a newly established field site at Wisconsin Lutheran College to take seasonal soil samples. We analyze the samples for pH, organic matter, mineralizable and permanganate oxidizable carbon, total carbon, available phosphorus, total phosphorus, and total nitrogen. Daily temperatures in each plot are also recorded. Some analyses were completed on-campus by undergraduate students and others were completed at the UW-Madison Soil and Plant Analysis Lab. We are presenting the results of the first two seasonal soil samplings of this long-term project. We look at labile nutrient pools compared to the recalcitrant nutrient pools in each ecosystem. These results (especially as the long-term data is compiled over the coming years) will help quantify the ecosystem services provided by these systems and will help city planners and homeowners in their management decisions about the type of systems they can establish to best protect the environment - specifically air, water, and soil."
Rain Garden and Composting
For students interested in volunteering their time to campus environmental projects, there are also two on-going activities in which they can participate. One is the maintenance and upkeep of the WLC rain garden located on the northeast side of campus close to Wisconsin Avenue. Since it has only been established for a few years, weeding quack grass and other unwanted plants, planting desirable species, and adding plant identification markers are still needed maintenance activities. Secondly, I have started an educational composting site outside Generac Hall. Volunteers can promote this program to the rest of the campus and help care for the individual compost piles.
Past Research Projects (short synopsis)
Overview: Greenhouse study growing wheat on soils amended with biosolids with or without lime treatment.
Question trying to answer: Does biosolids processing affect phosphorus availability to crops?
Project 1 Overview: Aquariums filled with gravel, wetland soil, and native wetland plants and either cattail or invasive reed canary grass.
Question trying to answer: Does plant composition affect phosphorus remediation of wastewater by constructed wetlands?
Project 2 Overview: Five-gallon buckets filled with water and silver nanoparticles which circulate through wetland soil; zebrafish live in the water as the target organism.
Question trying to answer: Can constructed wetland soil collect silver nanoparticles and prevent toxicity to zebrafish?
Overview: Sorption studies investigate ability of a silt loam, wetland soil, and water treatment residuals to remove silver nanoparticles from solution.
Question trying to answer: Can soil or other amendments be used to remove nanoparticles from wastewater?
Database of Wisconsin Soils Containing Calcite
Overview: Soils from around Wisconsin analyzed for pH, total inorganic carbonate, soil test phosphorus, and calcite/dolomite composition.
Question trying to answer: Are there areas in Wisconsin where the standard soil test phosphorus test, Bray P1, is not appropriate due to high levels of calcite?
Amundson, R., A. Ebeling, E. Oerter, and J Valley. 20xx. Relict soil evidence for profound quaternary aridification of the Atacama Desert, Chile. Geoderma. xx:xxx-xxx. (submitted).
Rockman, A., A. Armstrong, V. Hartmann, R. Balza, J. Erbe, D. Ebeling, and A. Ebeling. 2013. Using soil and water treatment residuals in a lab-scale constructed wetland to remediate silver nanoparticles. Computational Water, Energy, and Environmental Engineering. 2:16-25.
Ebeling, A.M., L.G. Bundy, A.W. Kittell, D.D. Ebeling. 2008. Evaluating the Bray P1 test on high pH, calcareous soils. Soil Sci. Soc. Am. J. 72:985-991.
Ebeling, A.M., L.R. Cooperband, and L.G. Bundy. 2003. Phosphorus availability to wheat from manures, biosolids, and an inorganic fertilizer. Comm. Soil Sci. and Plant Anal. 34:1347-1365.
Ebeling, A.M., L.R. Cooperband, and L.G. Bundy. 2003. Phosphorus source effects on soil test phosphorus and forms of phosphorus in soil. Comm. Soil Sci. and Plant Anal. 34:1897-1917.
Ebeling, A.M., L.G. Bundy, T.W. Andraski, and J.M. Powell. 2002. Dairy diet phosphorus effects on phosphorus losses in runoff from land-applied manure. Soil Sci. Soc. Am. J. 66:284-291.
Ebeling, A.M., L.G. Bundy, S.J. Sturgul. 2004. Phosphorus Movement from Land to Water. Nutrient and Pest Management Program. Univ. Wisconsin Madison Extension.
Kelling, K.A., L.G. Bundy, and A.M. Ebeling. 2003. When and Where to Apply Manure. Nutrient and Pest Management Program. Univ. Wisconsin Madison Extension.
Kelling, K.A., L.G. Bundy, and A.M. Ebeling. 2003. Management Options for Farms with High Soil Test Phosphorus Levels. Nutrient and Pest Management Program. Univ. Wisconsin Madison Extension.
Ebeling, A.M., L.G. Bundy, J.M. Powell, and L.D. Satter. 2002. Dietary phosphorus considerations in dairy management. Nutrient and Pest Management Program. Univ. Wisconsin Madison Extension.
Oral Presentations (presenting author in italics)
"Relict Soil Evidence for Profound Quaternary Aridification of the Atacama Desert, Chile." R. Amundson and A. Ebeling. ASA-CSSA-SSSA-GSA International Meeting, Long Beach, CA; November 5, 2014.
"Talking about Genesis and Science with your Children." D. and A. Ebeling. Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church, Pewaukee, WI. October 19, 2014.
"Lutheran Concept of Faith and Reason with Applications to Age of the Earth." D. and A. Ebeling. Lutheran College Conference. Wisconsin Lutheran College, Milwaukee, WI. August 11, 2014.
"Students Glorifying God at the Frontiers of Science Research." D. and A. Ebeling. Servant Leader Society. Wisconsin Lutheran College, Milwaukee, WI. April 11, 2014.
"Biochar Ability to Provide and Retain Nutrients in a Kentucky Blue Grass System." A. Ebeling, A. Rockman, A. Armstrong, D. Carey, D. Zitomer. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meeting, Cincinnati, OH. November 6, 2013.
"Silver Nanoparticle Sorption and Desorption to Soil and Water Treatment Residuals." D. Ebeling, A. Ebeling, A. Rockman, A. Armstrong. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meeting, Cincinnati, OH. November 5, 2013.
"Silver Nanoparticle Adsorption to Soil and Water Treatment Residuals and Impact on Zebrafish in a Lab-scale Constructed Wetland." 2nd International Conference on Pollution and Treatment Technology (PTT 2013), Beijing, China. July 15, 2013.
"Christianity and Science: God's glory is revealed in nature, and his plan for us is explained in scripture." D. and A. Ebeling. Asia Lutheran Seminary, Hong Kong. February 5, 2013.
"Studying science to give glory to God. Why Christians are motivated to be excellent scientists." D. and A. Ebeling. Salem Lutheran Church, Hong Kong. February 3, 2013.
"Seeing God's design in nature through the eyes of faith. How students can be a part of scientific discovery and caring for Creation." D. and A. Ebeling. Immanuel Lutheran College, Hong Kong. February 1, 2013.
"Phosphorus Availability from Biosolids: Recycling municipal waste by land application," Marquette Environmental Engineering Seminar Series, Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI. September 25, 2012.
"Should YOU be concerned about Phosphorus: General P Info & Study Final Report." WOWRA/WLWCA Winter Convention, Steven's Point, WI. January 28, 2012.
"Scripture and Reason: a look at Deep Time, Evolution, and Creation." (2-part series, co-presented) St. Lucas Lutheran Church, Milwaukee, WI. September 26 and October 3, 2011.
"Phosphorus in Septage: Study Update" (part of a panel discussion). WOWRA/WLWCA Winter Convention, Steven's Point, WI. January 28, 2011.
"Phosphorus Availability to Wheat from Various Biosolids." ASA-CSSA-SSSA-GSA International Meeting, Long Beach, CA. November 1, 2010.
"Food, Soil, and Water Quality...Does Organic Make a Difference?" Christ Lutheran Church, Pewaukee, WI. May 8, 2010.
"Available Phosphorus and Total Phosphorus: Implications for Septage Land Application." WOWRA/WLWCA Winter Convention, Steven’s Point, WI. January 30, 2010.
"Soil and P Source Effects on Phosphorus Buffering Capacity." ASA-CSSA-SSSA-GSA International Meeting, Houston, TX. October 6, 2008.
"Biosolids Treatment Effects on Phosphorus Availability." Spring Biosolids Symposium, Stevens Point, WI. March 21, 2007.
"Biosolids Treatment Effects on Phosphorus Availability." ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meeting, Indianapolis, IN. November 15, 2006.
"Phosphorus availability from Biosolids." Agronomy/Soils Field Day, Arlington Agricultural Research Station, WI. August 30, 2006.
"Evaluating Bray P1 on High pH, Calcareous Soils." Soil Testing Lab Conference, West Madison, WI. March 16, 2006.
"Evaluating Bray P1 on High pH, Calcareous Soils." Wisconsin Fertilizer, Aglime, and Pest Management Conference, Madison, WI. January 19, 2006.
"Evaluating Bray P1 on High pH, Calcareous Soils." ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meeting, Salt Lake City, UT. November 9, 2005.
"Phosphorus and Phosphorus Management." Managing Nutrients on Wisconsin Soils Workshop Madison, WI. March 22, 2005.
"Dietary P Effects on Manure and Runoff:" Training for Nutrient Management Planners Workshop Madison, WI. August 24 and September 8, 2005.
"Dairy Diet Effects on Phosphorus in Manure and Runoff." Agronomy/Soils Field Day, Agricultural Research Station, WI. September 14, 2000.
Conference Posters (presenting author in italics)
"Differences in Phosphorus Availability Among Six Southeast Wisconsin Biosolids." H. McLain, S. Schaal, and A. Ebeling. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meeting, Long Beach, CA; November, 2014.
"Effect of Silver Nanoparticles on Zebrafish and Bacteria in a Lab-Scale Constructed Wetland with Potential Remediation by Soil and Water Treatment Residuals." V. Hartmann, A. Rockmann, A. Armstrong, M.Wagner, B. Tellier, J. Erbe, R. Balza, D. Ebeling, and A. Ebeling. Wisconsin Wetlands Association's 18th Annual Conference – Great Wetlands, Healthy Watersheds. Sheboygan, WI; February 13, 2013.
"Effect of Silver Nanoparticles on Zebrafish and Bacteria in a Lab-Scale Constructed Wetland with Potential Remediation by Soil and Water Treatment Residuals." V. Hartmann, A. Rockman, A. Armstrong, M. Wagner, B. Tellier, J. Erbe, R. Balza, D. Ebeling, and A. Ebeling. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meeting, Cincinnati, OH; October, 2012.
"Phosphorus Concentration and Availability in Septage Samples in Wisconsin." A.M. Ebeling and F.A. Rwatambuga. ASA-CSSA-SSSA-GSA International Meeting, San Antonio, TX; October 2011.
"Lab Scale Constructed Wetland." V. Hartmann, M. Reep, N. Kersten, J. Erbe, A. Ebeling, and D. Ebeling.ASA-CSSA-SSSA-GSA International Meeting, San Antonio, TX; October 2011.
"Establishing a database of calcareous soils in Wisconsin." A.M. Ebeling, F.A. Rwatambuga, and M. Flister. ASA-CSSA-SSSA-GSA International Meeting, Pittsburg, PA; November 2009.
"Paleoclimate reconstructions from a Miocene-aged soil in the Atacama Desert." A.M. Ebeling, R. Amundson, and W. Sharp. ASA-CSSA-SSSA-GSA International Meeting, Houston, TX; November 2008.
"Evaluating the Bray P1 test on alkaline, calcareous soils." D.D. Ebeling, A.M. Ebeling, A. Kittell, L.G. Bundy, and F. Blum. Poster Presentation. American Society of Agronomy-Crop Science Society of America-Soil Science Society of America-Geological Society of America (ASA-CSSA-SSSA-GSA) International Meeting Houston,TX; November 2008.
"Phosphorus source effects on soil phosphorus buffering capacity." A.M. Ebeling and L.G. Bundy. ASA-SSA-SSSA International Meeting, Seattle, WA; October 2004.
"Phosphorus forms and plant availability in soils amended with organic phosphorus sources." A.M. Ebeling, L.G. Bundy, and J.M. Powell. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meeting, Charlotte, NC; October 2001.
"Dairy diet phosphorus effects on phosphorus losses in runoff from land-applied manure." A.M. Ebeling, L.G. Bundy, T.W. Andraski, and J.M. Powell. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meeting, Minneapolis, MN; October, 2000.
Ebeling, A.M., L.G. Bundy, A.W. Kittell, and D.D. Ebeling. 2006. Evaluation of the Bray P1 soil test on eastern red soils in Wisconsin. Proc. Wis. Fert. Aglime and Pest Mgmt. Conf. 45:296-302.
Ebeling, A.M., K.A. Kelling, and L.G. Bundy. 2002. Phosphorus management on high phosphorus soils. New Horizons in Soil Science: Soil and Water Management Meetings. Issue #12.
Ebeling, A.M., L.G. Bundy, T.W. Andraski, and J.M. Powell. 2001. Dairy diet phosphorus effects on phosphorus losses in runoff from land-applied manure. Proc. Wis. Fert. Aglime and Pest Mgmt. Conf. 40:58-69.
Bundy, L.G., T.W. Andraski, J.M. Powell, J.S. Studnicka, and A.M. Ebeling. 2000. Management practice effects on phosphorus losses in runoff. Proc. Wis. Fert. Aglime and Pest Mgmt. Conf. 39:23-34.
Ebeling, A.M., D. D. Ebeling, and F.A. Rwatambuga. 2011. Analysis of Total Phosphorus in Harvested Aquatic Plants from Pewaukee Lake, WI. Wisconsin Lutheran College Biology Dept. Technical Bulletin 014. Prepared for Pewaukee Lake Sanitary District. May.
Ebeling, A.M. and F.A. Rwatambuga. 2011. P Availability from Wisconsin Septage. Wisconsin Lutheran College Biology Dept. Technical Bulletin 015. Prepared for Wisconsin Liquid Waste Carriers Association. June.
Ebeling, A.M. 2001. Phosphorus source effects on phosphorus losses in runoff, plant availability, and soil phosphorus. M.S. Thesis. Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison.
Ebeling, A.M. 2007. Assessing available phosphorus in Wisconsin soils from additions of phosphorus fertilizer, manure, and biosolids. Ph.D. Thesis. Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison.