• limnology;
  • aquatic toxicology;
  • “whiting;
  • attenuation of light;
  • scattering;
  • turbidity

ABSTRACT: The effects “whiting” (CaCO3 precipitate) had on the optical properties and turbidity of the epilimnion of Owasco Lake, New York, were studied during the summer of 1985. Turbidity was partitioned according to “whiting” and non-“whiting” components utilizing a simple acidification procedure. Diffuse light attenuation was partitioned according to the attenuating processes of absorption and scattering. “Whiting” was present most of the summer. Two major “whiting” events occurred that caused major increases in turbidity and the attenuation of light. “Whiting” was the principle regulator of turbidity during the study; it caused increases in light attenuation by increasing light scattering. “Whiting” events can easily be mistaken by the public for phytoplankton blooms.