Start date:
Late October 2009
End date:
Mid December 2010
Taylor Valley, Lk Hoare, Lk Bonney, Lk Fryxell, Lk Vanda
Principle Investigator:
Peter Doran
University of Illinois Chicago
This project addresses the central hypothesis that biodiversity and ecosystem structure and function in the Dry Valleys are dictated by the interactions of climatic legacies with contemporary biotic and physical processes. Researchers will upgrade and maintain long-term, automated, lake-monitoring equipment in the Dry Valleys; carry out manual hydrologic balance measurements; collect data from, and re-set a number of long-term environmental sensors in and on the lakes; measure lake ice movements; collect sediment samples; and survey the bed contact between Lake Hoare and the Canada Glacier to determine the role of glacier movement in Lake Hoare lake-level history. Field team members will travel by helicopter to the established Taylor Valley field camps at Lakes Fryxell, Hoare, and Bonney. At each camp, team members will survey ablation stakes on the ice surface with the assistance of the Univerity NAVSTAR Consortium (UNAVCO). The researchers will also make day trips by helicopter to Wright Valley and Victoria Valley, where they will carry out further hydrologic balance measurements. Samples will be processed and analyzed at field camps and at the Crary Lab. Some samples will be shipped to the home institution for further analysis.