The Lake Erie Nearshore and Offshore Nutrient Study (LENONS)

Even though nutrient input target levels in Lake Erie have been reached, significant issues like the central basin ‘dead-zone,’ extensive Cladophora growth in the eastern basin and Lyngbya in the west, and repeated outbreaks of nuisance algae continue to occur. The role of nearshore and offshore dreissenid mussel populations and the flux and sequestration of nutrients within mussel beds and sediments remain a priority consideration to understanding the nearshore shunt hypothesis, and to explaining the Lake Erie trophic paradox. The proposed work will quantify all the major biotic and abiotic nutrient pools, flux rates, and trophic pathways in the nearshore and offshore regions of Lake Erie. We will directly measure nutrient levels in these compartments and flux rates in the most rapidly cycling pools. Additionally, we will couple our data with hydrodynamic models of particle transport and phosphate source tracking using δ18OP to assess whether the pools of nutrients in the nearshore and offshore regions follow the predicted patterns of lake mixing models and the nearshore shunt hypothesis.

Read here for a June 2012 update.

For more pictures, please visit our multimedia gallery (here, here, and here). Videos are also available!


Great Lakes Center

Buffalo State  •  1300 Elmwood Avenue  •  Science and Math Complex 319
Buffalo, New York 14222  •  Phone: (716) 878-4329 •  Fax: (716) 878-6644