PhD or MSc grant available – Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières (Québec, Canada)

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thEAC9OBJTEcosystemic consequences of zooplankton diel vertical migrations on the transport of nutrients and pollutants in lakes

Aim of the project: The objective of this research project is to understand the consequences of zooplankton diel vertical migrations (DVM) on the productivity and the quality of water in boreal oligotrophic lakes. More precisely, this project aims at better understanding the functional coupling between the hypo- and epilimnetic habitats due to DVM in terms of transport of nutrients and pollutants across these two habitats.

DVM are among the most important migration phenomena at a global level, with huge potential consequences for ecosystem functioning. By migrating across layers with different resources, the zooplankton has the potential to couple habitats on the vertical axis, as it has been clearly shown in the ocean. Marine zooplankton DVM, for example, constitute a sort of “biological pump” able to increase the sink of carbon in the oceans, thus contributing to control CO2 in the atmosphere. The consequences of DVM for lakes are still poorly studied, mainly in terms of nutrient recycling and speciation of contaminants. Our aim is thus to fill this gap by analysing the consequences for the ecosystems of such migrations both in terms of biogeochemical cycles in lakes and of contaminant accumulation within the food web.


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