US Long-Term Ecological Research Network
We collect zooplankton samples at the deepest part of the lake using two different gear types.  We take one vertical tow with a Wisconsin Net (80um mesh), and a series of Schindler Patalas (53um mesh) samples spanning the water column.  All samples are preserved in cold 95% EtOH.
After collection we combine subsamples of the individual Schindler Patalas trap samples to create one hypsometrically pooled sample for each lake/date. The individual depth samples are discarded after pooling except from one August sampling date per year.  The Hypsometrically Pooled sample and the Wisconsin Net sample are archived in the UW Zoology museum.
We count zooplankton in one or two subsamples, each representing 1.8L of lake water, of the hypsometrically pooled samples to calculate zooplankton abundance. We count one sample date per month from the open water season, and the February ice cover sample.   We identify individuals to genus or species, take length measurements, and count eggs and embryos. 
Protocol log:   1981-May1984 -- a 0.5m high, 31L Schindler Patalas trap with 80um mesh net was used.  Two Wisconsin Net tows were collected.  Preservative was 12% buffered formalin.
     June1984 -- changed to 53um mesh net on Schindler trap.
     July1986 -- began using the 2m high, 45L Schindler Patalas trap.  Changed WI Net collection to take only one tow.
     2001 -- changed zooplankton preservative from 12% buffered formalin to 95% EtOH.
     The number of sample dates per year counted varies with lake and year, from 5 dates/year to 17 dates/year.
     1981-1983 -- pooled samples are of several types: Total Pooled (TP) were created using equal volume subsamples of the Schindler samples.  Epi, Meta, Hypo pooled used equal volume subsamples from the Schindler samples collected from each of the thermal strata.  Strata Pooled used equal volume subsamples from the Epi, Meta, Hypo pooled samples to create an entire lake sample.  Hypsometrically Pooled (HP) is our standard, which uses subsample volumes weighted to represent the hypsometry of the lake.
LTER Keywords
Protocol Format
Protocol ID
Protocol Type
field & laboratory