Details of a science projectPlankton communities in Arctic lakes
With the proposed study we aim at using key ecological indicators to assess changes in High Arctic lakes and ponds. We plan to study the biodiversity and community structure of freshwater phyto- and zooplankton in relation to goose presence and ecological succession/age of a waterbody. For the phytoplankton part of this study we focus on Desmidiaceae communities (desmids) in Sphagnum. Additionally (when possible) we would also like to investigate the vascular plants around the studied waterbodies (vegetation mapping) as this species group is also influenced by the increasing numbers of geese. Finally, recent investigations show that microplastic might even be present in snowfall in the Artic. This may have strong effects on the ecosystem there. Since these plastics might even be visible in the zooplankton samples, we would like to investigate those as well. No additional sampling is needed, however.
People involved in the project Christophe Brochard, Maarten Loonen.