Lake Ecology & Management

biol 301 - Great Lakes - Summer Session II

Class at shore w pontoon raft.JPG

Field study of lakes and other freshwater systems with applications to planning and management. Includes an introduction to limnology and investigation of representative lakes, streams, and wetlands of the region and compares the North American Great Lakes with the other great lakes of the world and their stewardship. Prerequisite: one year of general biology and one year of general chemistry. (4 credits)

Field, Applied

Professor: Dr. John Korstad

Meets: Tuesday & Thursday


knowledge gained

Students gain knowledge of lake ecosystems by piecing together the physical, chemical, and biological data they collect to understand how complex lake ecosystems work. They learn how to assess the data in interdisciplinary ways and then apply it in practical ways as student teams by taking the information collected about each lake and putting together an informative report for the local Lake Associations to help them serve, protect, and restore their lake.


skills developed

Field and lab methodology for identification and quantitative analysis of physical (temperature, light, currents, etc.), chemical (pH, alkalinity, hardness, conductivity, total dissolved solids, carbon dioxide, nitrate, phosphate, chloride, and other chemicals), and biological (plankton, fecal coliform bacteria, benthos, and fish) properties of water samples.

How to scientifically graph water sample data.

How to appropriately meet, interview, work with, and help lake homeowners understand and implement best practices for lake management.

Learn how to work as a class-team as well as a smaller team of 2-4 students in more detailed sampling of one lake and then writing a report on that lake that includes a thorough description (including graphs), analysis, and recommendations to the lake homeowners on how they can best manage their common ecosystem.


Field Experiences

Little Twin Lake

Pickerel Lake

Starvation Lake

Big Blue Lake

Papoose Lake

Squaw Lake

Rainbow Lake

Bear Lake

Manistee Lake

Bear Lake Bog

Boardman River