Research for the Environment

Wasserverlauf mit Ufer

UFZ-Seminar "Water and Environment"

Monday, June 22nd, 2015, 3pm
Seminarroom, Brückstraße 3a, D-39114 Magdeburg

Xiangzhen Kong
Netherlands Institute of Ecology Wageningen (NIOO-KNAW), Department of Aquatic Ecology

Regime shifts in a large shallow lake: integrating paleolimnological and modelling evidences

Regime shifts in shallow lake ecosystems driven by anthropogenic activities are well-documented, for which nutrient loading is generally considered as the major stressor. Synergetic effects of hydrological regulation with eutrophication on the long-term dynamics of shallow lake ecosystem are, however, often overlooked and largely underestimated. Here we quantitatively show that hydrological regulation caused a catastrophic collapse of submerged vegetation and aggravated the impact of eutrophication by accelerating the regime shift in a decadal scale, in a large shallow lake which is located along one of the most densely populated areas - lower Yangtze River floodplain - in China. We apply a new methodology that integrates consistent evidence from both paleolimnological records and ecosystem modelling for evaluation of potential mechanisms in long-term ecosystem dynamics. Our study highlights the urgency and importance of implementing multi-objective hydrological regulation projects with ecological sustainability perspectives for aquatic ecosystems management around the globe.



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