North Temperate Lakes, Long-Term Ecological Research Network Office
Data Center Description
The long-term regional ecology of North Temperate lakes is the theme for the North Temperate Lakes (NTL) LTER. Our vision is to gain a predictive understanding of the ecology of lakes at longer and broader scales than has been traditional in limnology. Thus, we analyze and interpret data we collect over long periods on suites of lakes. The lakes are located from high to low in the landscapes of forested, agricultural, and urban catchments. We also collaborate with other long-term lake sites in the Laurentian Great Lakes region and elsewhere. The research is interdisciplinary involving physical, biological, and social scientists. Our major goals are:
-to perceive long-term changes in these lake ecosystems;
-to understand within lake interactions among physical, chemical, and biological processes that along with external drivers result in long-term dynamics;
-to understand lake ecology at the lake district scale;
-to integrate atmospheric, hydrologic, and biotic processes regionally;
-to understand the reciprocal interactions between lakes and society.
Our two field stations facilitate research in the lake districts ? the Limnology Laboratory on Lake Mendota in the Yahara Lake District of southern Wisconsin and the Trout Lake Station in the Northern Highlands of Wisconsin. Our data are public and available through this web site. Most of our data sets date to 1981 when this site became one of the first 6 LTER sites funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation, but several originate as early as the 1850s or as late as the mid 1990s. We invite collaboration with others.