North Temperate Lakes Long Term Ecological Research studies the ecology of lakes as one of a network of sites established by the National Science Foundation. We are interested in how biophysical setting, climate, and changing land use and cover interact to shape lake characteristics and dynamics over time (past, present, future).
Our primary study sites include a set of seven northern Wisconsin and four southern Wisconsin lakes and their surrounding landscapes. The project, which started in 1981, is administered by the Center for Limnology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Many lakes can exist in two regimes, one characterized by clear water and the other one turbid. The turbid, or eutrophic, condition is caused by excessive fertilization with nutrients. By fitting nonlinear time series models to data from Lake Mendota, NTL researchers have estimated that the probability of the turbid regime is about 75%. Furthermore, the probability of irreversible turbidity (sustained by recycling from sediments) is about 25%. We have also estimated the effects of changes in phosphorus loading on the regime, and used spatial models to study the effects of farming practices on the phosphorus loading ....
This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Cooperative Agreement #DEB-0822700, NTL LTER. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in the material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.