Discovery Park Undergraduate Research Internship Program

"Physical Influences on Community Composition and Biomass of Great Lakes Zooplankton"

About the Project

Project Time & Type:
Fall 2011 - DURI
Research area(s):
Project Description:
Conditions in the Laurentian Great Lakes change rapidly in response to a variety of stressors, including altered land use, new invasive species such as Asian carp and the effects of climate change. Zooplankton, tiny invertebrates which form an integral part of aquatic foodwebs, may be some of the first organisms to be affected by such changes. Any differences in zooplankton growth, peak biomass numbers or community composition could have drastic effects cascading up the food web, ultimately affecting fish and wildlife. Through this project we aim to examine how zooplankton diversity and growth varies with environmental conditions such as temperature and light penetration. Results will be used to inform concurrent studies on fish growth and future studies on changing conditions in the Great Lakes.
Expected Student Contributions:
The intern will pprocess zooplankton samples in the laboratory. Then, the intern will analyze resulting data and relate resulting patterns of zooplankton composition and biomass to physical features of the environment.
Related Website(s):
Desired Qualifications:
No specific requirements (training will be provided). Interest in ecological research is preferred.
Estimated Weekly Hours:
Department awards independent research credits for this project?
Yes, 2 credit hours

Professor in Charge

Hook, Tomas
forestry and natural resources

Student Supervisor

Carolyn Foley
Research Associate

Cooperating Faculty

Cary Troy
Civil Engineering