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Abstract Detail

Ecological Section

Pershyn, Carrianne E. [1], Mihuc, Timothy B. [2], Boyer, Gregory L. [3], Satchwell, Michael F. [4], Allen, Eileen [5], Jones, Jeffry [6], Thomas, Sean [7], Greene, Meghan [8].

Cyanobacteria and the sixth Great Lake: community dynamics of toxic algal blooms in Lake Champlain, USA.

Phytoplankton communities form the base of the Lake Champlain aquatic food web and are important indicators of water quality. Cyanobacterial algae can release neurotoxins when blooms are in high concentrations, and have been a potential health issue for residents of the Lake Champlain basin (Boyer et al. 2006). The purpose of this study was to develop and test a flow through methodology for mapping of Lake Champlain algal blooms and to describe the phytoplankton community dynamics in bloom areas. We used fluorometers linked to a spatial GPS signal to map chlorophyll a and phycocyanin pigments to assess total algal biomass and blue-green algae, respectively. Mapping consisted of continuous data collection using Turner Designs Algaewatch and Cyanowatch fluorometers. In addition to algal pigments other selected parameters, primarily temperature, were also mapped. We tested a variety of flow devices and instrument set-ups. Results indicate that this method is feasible and could be applied at larger scales for first tier monitoring of algal blooms. We were able to detect bloom conditions in Lake Champlain and develop field and laboratory protocols to produce accurate bloom maps. Relationships with other parameters suggest a temperature threshold may exist for blue-green bloom formation in Lake Champlain. Biological samples were taken on Lake Champlain during the months of July, August, and September using horizontal surface tows with a 63 micron Wisconsin net. The samples were counted and identified to the lowest possible taxon and data were used to calculate density, species richness, species abundance, and Simpsonís index of diversity. Results show dominant species in bloom sites were Microcystis spp. and Anabaena spp. Furthermore, our community data suggest that there is spatial variation of dominant cyanobacteria throughout the lake, and that the highest concentrations of these cyanobacteria are in the Northeastern parts of the lake.

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Related Links:
Lake Champlain Research Institute homepage

1 - SUNY Plattsburgh, Lake Champlain Research Institute and CEES, 101 Borad St, Plattsburgh, New York, 12901, USA
2 - SUNY Plattsburgh, Lake Champlain Research Institute and CEES
3 - SUNY-Environmental Science and Forestry, Department of Chemistry
4 - SUNY- Environmental Science and Forestry, Chemistry
5 - SUNY Plattsburgh, Center for Earth and Environmental Sciences
6 - SUNY Plattsburgh, Lake Champlain Research Institute
7 - Plattsburgh State University of New York, Biological Sciences, 101 Broad Street, Plattsburgh, NY, 12901, USA
8 -



Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Sections
Session: P
Location: Exhibit Hall (Northeast, Southwest & Southeast)/Hilton
Date: Sunday, July 8th, 2007
Time: 8:00 AM
Number: P49012
Abstract ID:2121

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