The effects of climate change are evident globally, from increased temperature to changing weather patterns. It is paramount to establish baseline data and continually monitor environments to truly understand how ecosystems will adapt and respond to the changing climate.

As air and water temperatures rise, Arctic ice is melting, and glaciers are calving off into the sea. Arctic lakes are sheltered under a thick layer of ice for most of the year, so what happens with the lake metabolisms and ecosystems is unknown during this time.

Arctic Lake Metabolism

Vendy Hazukova, PhD student from University of Maine, has been using PME monitoring equipment to research the changing metabolisms in Greenland lakes between ice-cover and ice melts in the summer.

PME loggers were chosen for this study due to their small form factor and use in long-term deployments.

The PME MiniDOT logger can record high frequency, precise dissolved oxygen and temperature measurements, and the PME miniPAR measures how much light is penetrating through the ice.

Dissolved oxygen and light levels are both indicative of whether photosynthesis or respiration is occurring in a lake. The loggers were deployed with PME miniWIPERs to prevent biofoul growth which would occur over the four-month deployment.

Deployment Method

The loggers were vertically attached to each other with a string and then to a buoy that was deployed through a hole drilled in the ice in the spring by the researchers and retrieved late in the summer. The buoy was placed about a meter below the assumed ice depth so neither the buoy nor the loggers would become frozen in the ice.

Data Collected

The data collected from the miniPARs and miniDOTs, deployed for about four months, gave the researchers the information they needed to calculate the lake metabolisms and how they changed over time. The data also provided an easy comparison between summer lake metabolisms and under-ice lake metabolisms.

For more information on this research project, please visit PMEs website (Measuring Arctic Lake Metabolisms in Greenland | PME) or watch PME’s interview with Vendy Hazukova (Gather & Gab with Vendy Hazukova | PME – YouTube).

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