Deliverable 3.20

Abstract: Manuscript on management options to deal with rising temperature reduced water input and enhanced nutrient in European lakes

Shallow lakes are very sensitive to external perturbations. Unprecedented rates of warming threaten the functioning and biodiversity of shallow lakes, not least lakes located in Mediterranean climatic zones that are subjected to additional multiple stressors such as intensive land use. They are highly sensitive to the balance between evaporation and precipitation due to their large surface:volume ratio which is particularly marked in the Mediterranean climate owing to the strong linkages between climate and the hydrological cycle. 

In Turkey, climate models predict dramatic summer drought episodes across western and southern parts due to a >30% decrease in winter precipitation and enhanced summer evaporation. Such drought conditions will lead to an even stronger reduction in runoff waters, projected to be as large as 30-40%. This may have serious consequences for the ecology of shallow lakes in this region and may even lead ultimately to complete dry out. To further our understanding of the responses of shallow lakes located in the Mediterranean to a changing climate along with other stressors and to contribute to their conservation with adequate mitigation measures, we carried out research using space for time substitute with large number of lakes, paleoecology, mesocosms experiments approaches. Additionally, detailed paleoecological analysis of three lakes with instrumental measurements of water level changes were undertaken to explore the impact of hydrological alterations on shallow lakes. 

This Deliverable comprises a series of manuscripts and a report focusing on management options to deal with rising temperature, reduced water input and enhamced nutrients in European lakes. Of the five research papers, one has been published and the others submitted. They include studies comparing contemporary vegetation and plant remains in surface sediment, a similar study on Cladocerans, space-for-time substitution analysis of climate and nutrient enrichment effects on lake ecology, in situ experiments to examine diel migration of zooplankton and water level and fish-mediated cascade effects on the microbial community.


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