Greenland Field Expedition Blog – Saros

University of Maine’s Jasmine Saros and a team of graduate students and post-doctorate students are in Greenland this summer investigating diatom assemblages for clues on how climate change 05 impact Arctic lakes. 

Diatoms, some of the smallest organisms in the Arctic, 05 be the biggest indicators of climate-related changes in the region’s lake ecosystems. These tiny, single-celled algae are the focus of a new study led by a researcher at the University of Maine to examine what diatoms in lakes across Greenland can tell us about environmental change.

Jasmine Saros is a professor and lake ecologist at the University of Maine’s Climate Change Institute where she studies how climate change affects freshwater ecosystems. This summer she and a small team of graduate students and post-doctorate researchers will travel to Greenland to collect diatoms, study their taxonomy and ecology, as well as document any changes in diatom assemblages. The National Science Foundation supports this research.

“Diatoms change very early in response to environmental change—often before other organisms in the food web will change,” says Saros. “So they are an early warning system, potentially, on how climate change will alter how lakes function in the Arctic. And of course, what happens in the Arctic can have global implications.”


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