Physical, chemical and biological limnology; hydrology and geochemistry; paleolimnology; climate forcing; producer and consumer ecology; ecology of invasions; ecosystem variability; landscape ecology; lake, landscape and human interactions.
Lakes are conspicuous, ecologically-important, and socially-valued components of landscapes. Lakes collect water, energy, solutes and pollutants from the land and atmosphere, provide habitats and resources for organisms, and interact with diverse human activities. The North Temperate Lakes Long-Term Ecological Research program aims to understand the ecology of lakes in relation to relevant atmospheric, geochemical, landscape and human processes. Our overarching research question is “How do biophysical setting, climate, and changing land use and cover interact to shape lake characteristics and dynamics over time (past, present, future)?”
The North Temperate Lakes Long-Term Ecological Research (NTL-LTER) program was established in 1981. Over the past 20 years we have designed and implemented a comprehensive study of seven lakes in a forested landscape within the Northern Highland Lake District in northern Wisconsin, and since 1994, an additional four lakes in the agricultural and urban catchments in southern Wisconsin. We have increased our understanding of long-term dynamics of lakes at spatial scales ranging from small sites within lakes to the northern hemisphere.