Modeling the Effects of Land Use and Climate Change on Lakes

Ecology and Environment

Climate change and land use are affecting the cold-water ecosystems of lakes in the Midwest. In a recent paper appearing in the journal Ecosphere, MSI PI Gretchen Hansen (assistant professor, Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology) and colleagues used statistical models to determine the resilience of lakes to these effects, and determined the temperature and watershed conditions above which critical habitat was lost. The paper also gives guidelines for land use that would protect the habitats. A story about the paper can be found on the University of Minnesota News site: Conserving Critical Habitat in the Face of Climate Change in Midwestern Lakes by Managing Watershed Land Use. The paper can be found on the journal website: Quantifying the Resilience of Coldwater Lake Habitat to Climate and Land Use Change to Prioritize Watershed Conservation.

Professor Hansen uses MSI for research into patterns and processes in aquatic communities and ecosystems and management responses to local, regional, and global change.