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students conducting research in the fish lab

University of Idaho Limnology Lab

Our program sponsors significant research efforts happening in the area of limnology. Limnology is the broad study of inland waters, including, biota, physical and chemical properties and their interactions. Currently the University of Idaho Limnology Lab supports vibrant research efforts focused on several broad-based concepts, including:

  • Increasing the understanding of surface and groundwater environments to recommend management strategies to improve water quality
  • Examining the long-term effects of the implemented strategies of inland waters preservation and management
  • Studying the ecology of key invertebrates in aquatic ecosystems and to predict their response to changing environmental conditions
Associate Professor of Limnology Frank Wilhelm is a board member of Washington Lakes Protection Association and leads critical research related to Limnology and whole-lake restoration and management. Graduate students also work with Wilhelm to study nutrient cycling through benthic-pelagic coupling. Teams are also studying the ecology of aquatic macroinvertebrates and the influence of temperature on life history and reproductive strategies, as well as, redator-prey relationships.

Kokanee Recovery at Lake Pend Oreille
To give you an example of graduate research happening in our program, M.S. fisheries student Tim Caldwell is working with Wilhelm to investigate the survival of kokanee in Lake Pend Oreille, Idaho's largest lake. The goal of Caldwell’s research is to:
  • Determine role of Mysis in cycling of nutrients in surface waters of LPO
  • Use bioenergetic modeling to examine whole-lake nutrient dynamics
  • Examine restoration options