EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

A New Thermal Categorization of Ice-covered Lakes

Bernard Yang1, Mathew Wells1, Bailey McMeans2, Hilary Dugan3, James Rusak4,5, Gesa Weyhenmeyer6, Jennifer Brentrup7,8, Allison Hrycik7,9, Alo Laas10, Rachel Pilla11, Jay Austin12, Paul Blanchfield5,13, Cayelan Carey14, Matthew Guzzo2,15, Noah Lottig16, Murray Mackay17, Trevor Middel18, Don Pierson6, Junbo Wang19, and Joelle Young20
Bernard Yang et al.
  • 1Department of Physical and Environmental Sciences, University of Toronto Scarborough, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • 2Department of Biology, University of Toronto Mississauga, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
  • 3Center for Limnology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Wisconsin, USA
  • 4Dorset Environmental Science Centre, Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation, and Parks, Dorset, Ontario, Canada
  • 5Department of Biology, Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada
  • 6Department of Ecology and Genetics/Limnology, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden
  • 7Rubenstein Ecosystem Science Laboratory, University of Vermont, Vermont, USA
  • 8Department of Biology and Environmental Studies, St. Olaf College, Minnesota, USA
  • 9Department of Biology, University of Vermont, Vermont, USA
  • 10Chair of Hydrobiology and Fishery, Institute of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Estonian University of Life Sciences, Tartu, Estonia
  • 11Department of Biology, Miami University, Oxford, Ohio, USA
  • 12Large Lakes Observatory, University of Minnesota Duluth, Duluth, Minnesota, USA
  • 13Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • 14Department of Biological Sciences, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia, USA
  • 15Department of Integrative Biology, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, Canada
  • 16Center for Limnology Trout Lake Station, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Wisconsin, USA
  • 17Environmental Numerical Weather Prediction Research, Science and Technology Branch, Environment and Climate Change Canada, Canada
  • 18Harkness Laboratory of Fisheries Research, Aquatic Research and Monitoring Section, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Trent University, Peterborough, Ontario, Canada
  • 19Key Laboratory of Tibetan Environment Changes and Land Surface Processes (TEL) /Nam Co Observation and Research Station (NAMORS), Institute of Tibetan Plateau Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
  • 20Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation, and Parks, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Lakes are traditionally classified based on their thermal regime and trophic status. While this classification adequately captures many lakes, it is not sufficient to understand seasonally ice-covered lakes, the most common lake type on Earth. We describe the inverse thermal stratification in 19 highly varying lakes and derive a model that predicts the temperature profile as a function of wind stress, area, and depth. The results suggest an additional subdivision of seasonally ice-covered lakes to differentiate under-ice stratification. When ice forms in smaller and deeper lakes, inverse stratification will form with a thin buoyant layer of cold water (near 0oC) below the ice, which remains above a deeper 4oC layer. In contrast, the entire water column can cool to ~0oC in larger and shallower lakes. We suggest these alternative conditions for dimictic lakes be termed “cryostratified” and “cryomictic.”

How to cite: Yang, B., Wells, M., McMeans, B., Dugan, H., Rusak, J., Weyhenmeyer, G., Brentrup, J., Hrycik, A., Laas, A., Pilla, R., Austin, J., Blanchfield, P., Carey, C., Guzzo, M., Lottig, N., Mackay, M., Middel, T., Pierson, D., Wang, J., and Young, J.: A New Thermal Categorization of Ice-covered Lakes, EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-923,, 2021.

Corresponding presentation materials formerly uploaded have been withdrawn.