Research Spotlight: River-to-lake connectivity and habitat diversity



[1] The 45,000 lakes in the Mackenzie River delta, Canada, represent an especially diverse aquatic habitat compared to lakes in surrounding Arctic areas. River-to-lake connectivity could play a role in this diversity, as river water entering lakes replenishes nutrients and affects water transparency. Lesack and Marsh sought to better understand how river-to-lake connectivity affects biodiversity in the region. Using 40 years of data on water levels in the delta combined with a floodplain geometry model, they estimated the volumes of river water added to lake water during the annual flood peak for nine lakes at different elevations. (Water Resources Research, doi:10.1029/2010WR009607, 2010)