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areal primary production, trophic classification, shallow lake


Lake trophic state is of primary concern for water resource managers and is used as a measure of water quality and classification for beneficial uses. Secchi transparency, total phosphorus and chlorophyll a are surrogate measurements used in the calculation of trophic state indices (TSI) which classify waters as oligotrophic, mesotrophic, eutrophic or hypereutrophic. Yet the relationships between these surrogate measurements and direct measures of lake productivity vary regionally and may be influenced by external factors such as non-algal turbidity. Prairie pothole basins, common throughout eastern South Dakota and southwestern Minnesota, are shallow glacial lakes subject to frequent winds and sediment resuspension. Light-dark oxygen bottle methodology was employed to evaluate vertical planktonic production within an eastern South Dakota pothole basin. Secchi transparency, total phosphorus and planktonic chlorophyll a were also measured from each of three basin sites at biweekly intervals throughout the 2012 growing season. Secchi transparencies ranged between 0.13 and 0.25 meters, corresponding to an average TSISD value of 84.4 (hypereutrophy). Total phosphorus concentrations ranged between 178 and 858 ug/L, corresponding to an average TSITP of 86.7 (hypereutrophy). Chlorophyll a values corresponded to an average TSIChla value of 69.4 (transitional between eutrophy and hypereutrophy) and vertical production profiles yielded areal net primary productivity values averaging 288.3 mg C∙m-2∙d-1 (mesotrophy). Our results support the hypothesis that resuspended non-algal turbidity, not planktonic production, decreases water transparency and reduces potential net primary production. Chlorophyll a TSI values corresponded most closely with measurements of planktonic production and better represented the trophic state of this basin.

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Proceedings of the South Dakota Academy of Science



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