background header Graduate Program of Hydrologic Sciences
background header Graduate Program of Hydrologic Sciences
background header Graduate Program of Hydrologic Sciences

Graduate Program of Hydrologic Sciences

Academic & Research Interest

Dr. Susfalk’s interests are in forest soils, soil chemistry, surface water quality, and watershed hydrology. He has worked extensively in the semi-arid forests of the eastern Sierra Nevada mountains for the past ten years. Currently, Dr. Susfalk is coordinating the Incline Creek Watershed Project (, whose goal is attract process-level research studies in an effort to understand how urbanization affects the water quality of Lake Tahoe. Before joining DRI, Dr. Susfalk was a Post-Doctoral assistant at the University of California, Santa Cruz where he was part of a multi-institutional, collaborative project attempting to use stable carbon isotopes to partition soil respiration under native forest vegetation into its component rhizosphere- and microbial-derived parts. During graduate studies at the University of Nevada, Reno, Dr. Susfalk investigated how the Mediterranean-type climate of the eastern Sierra Nevada controls nutrient cycling within forests. Dr. Susfalk has also investigated the soil chemistry of phosphorus as it relates to plant-availability and chemical extractability tests in soils of differing phosphorus status. Currently, Dr. Susfalk’s projects relate to understanding and estimating the transport of nutrients and suspended sediments in streams, rivers, and lakes. Within the Lake Tahoe basin, Dr. Susfalk is assessing the impacts that urbanization, such as recreational and commercial land-uses, has on water quality. He is also monitoring the impact that a stream restoration project has on the transport and delivery of coarse, medium, and fine-grained suspended sediment to Lake Tahoe. Outside of the basin, Dr. Susfalk’s turbidity monitoring will help support an upcoming suspended sediment TMDL for the Upper Carson River, and he is part of a collaborative team charged with assessing the use of polyacrylamides as a way to reduce seepage from irrigation canals by conducting experiments at the laboratory and field scales.

B.A. Occidental College, 1992
M.S. University of California, Santa Barbara, 1994
Ph.D. University of Nevada, Reno, 2000

Areas of Study

Nutrient cycling,   Sediment transport,  

Contact Info

2215 Raggio Parkway
Reno,  Nevada   89512
Office: (775) 673-7453