2020 > 09

Ana Isabel Ayala, a PhD student at the Department of Ecology and Genetics at Uppsala University, recently completed a set of comprehensive simulations showing future changes in Lake Erken’s water temperature and thermal structure.
The work contributes to the Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Inter-comparison Project. It examines the potential changes that can be expected under a stringent mitigation scenario (Graph (b), RCP 2.6) and an intermediate scenario (Graph (c), RCP 6.0). The RCP 2.6 scenario keep global warming below 2 ⁰C above pre-industrial temperatures by 2100. In contrast, under the RCP 6.0 scenario the global mean temperature will continually increase by 2.5 ⁰C and 4 ⁰C by the end of the century. Under the most optimistic assumptions (RCP 2.6) the lakes surface temperature was projected to increase by approximately 1.8 ⁰C and the length of the stratified period would increase by approximately 2 weeks by the end of this century. However, under the intermediate pathway (RCP 6.0) a surface water temperature increase of up to 3 ⁰C and a 22 days longer stratified period are predicted. The graph illustrates the average water temperature heat maps calculated over the entire historical control period and the two future RCP 2.6 (stringent mitigation scenario) and RCP 6.0 (intermediate scenario) scenarios. This clearly illustrates that future water temperatures will be warmer, and that thermal stratification will be more stable and longer lasting.

SITES Water measurements of lake water temperature were used extensively to calibrate and validate the GOTM hydrodynamic lake model used to make these simulations. Meteorological data collected from Malma Island in Lake Erken were used to test the quality of the model, which ultimately allowed many hundred years of simulations to be run in a more effective manner. The publication describing this work is available here

A new experimental stream infrastructure has been under construction at Svartberget Research Station during August and September. This exciting new project led by Lenka Kuglerová, jointly funded by grants from the Wallenberg foundation and FORMAS, will provide a set of 12 each 14.4 meter long and 0.2 m wide experimental flumes fed with water from a nearby stream. These flumes will allow gradient, substrate and flow conditions, water temperature and nutrient status to be controlled in a natural but reproducible setting. Flow in each flume is designed to be variable from 0 to 1 L s-1 and gradient from 0 to 1.5 degrees with the potential to alter the angle along the flume length to create pool and riffle sections within each artificial stream. The design and construction phase of this new facility led by Meredith Blackburn is expected to be completed in early October and the first experiment will be undertaken at the beginning of 2021.

Photographer: Meredith Blackburn.

Photographer: Meredith Blackburn.

As every year, autumn arrived fast in Abisko and plans to end the open water season in the coming weeks on Lake Almbergasjön are establishing (first ice expected soon, removal of equipment necessary). On Lake Almbergasjön most of Abisko´s SITES Water long-term monitoring installations are located. The monitoring programme provides a unique opportunity to not only measure the lake’s water temperature and oxygen profile, but also to take a deeper look into the fluxes of greenhouse gases from its sediment and water column. Therefore, floating flux chambers developed by David Bastviken and his research group are used. The uniqueness of this data series becomes apparent when considering the fact that it is the only sub-arctic lake where this type of data is available globally.

Before the end of 2020 the first data sets will be provided on the SITES Data Portal open to use by the research community.

Short facts - Lake Almbergasjön:

  • Location: 68°19'54.89"N, 19° 9'15.15"E
  • Altitude: 380 m a.s.l.
  • Area: app. 5.7ha
  • Maximum depth: 4.5 ± 0.5m
  • Trophic status: oligotrophic
  • Additional information: stable stratification during winter, non-stable stratification during summer i.e. the lake mixes several times every summer. 

Greenhouse Gas flux chamber located on Lake Almbergasjön (Abisko research area) measuring Carbon dioxide emissions. Phographer: Erik Lundin

Do not miss the 17th Annual Krycklan symposium, which this year has the theme:
“Drained wetlands – effects of continued forestry and restoration”.

Take this opportunity to get an insight into the most recent research questions within the Krycklan Catchment Study.

Read more about Krycklan Catchment Study here
Sign up for the symposium here.
Download the programme here

The schedule (all times in Swedish – Stockholm – time):

Krycklan: Wetlands – forestry and restoration
13.00 - 13.10     Welcome to land of opportunity (Hjalmar Laudon, SLU)

13.10 – 13.20    The changing management of mires over time (Eliza Hasselquist, SLU)

13.20 - 13.40     Long-term nutrient leakage from drained forests
                          (Mika Nieminen, Luke, invited)

13.40 - 14.00     Methods for evaluation of peatland restoration success
                          (Hannu Marttila, University of Oulo, invited)

14.00 - 14.10     Leg stretch  

Trollberget a new infrastructure in the infrastructure
14.10 - 14.30    Trollberget Virtual tour

14.30 - 14.45    How does rewetting affect the greenhouse gas balance of a drained                                   peatland forest in boreal Sweden? (Järvi Järveoja, SLU)

14.45 - 15.00    Ditch cleaning and wetland restoration – what are the effects on
                         stream carbon?
(Marcus Wallin, SLU)

15.00 – 15.15   Ditch cleaning versus wetland restoration – Effects on mercury in water.
                         (Karin Eklöf, SLU)

15.15 – 15.30   Restored wetlands – hotspots for methane emissions and mercury                                     methylation? (Mats Öquist, SLU)

15.30 – 15.45   EviWet: How do mires regulate flow extremes? (Kevin Bishop, SLU)

15.45 – 16.00  Flatter curves and bigger bundles; the WetKit-ES project for                                                multifunctional agricultural wetlands. (Martyn Futter, SLU)

16.00 – 16.15   Discussion


Usually about 450 guest researchers who spend around 6,000 guest nights are hosted at Abisko Scientific Research Station during a field season each year. So far, the research station has only seen 115 guests. Quiet, empty, different… In normal years, it is quite noisy in the lunch room at ten o'clock, when there is a combined morning Fika for staff and guests. This year, only the station staff is allowed in the lunch room, practicing social distancing. Passage corridors at the station have been closed as well, so guests have to move outdoors. In addition, all common areas are closed so the guests do not see much of each other either. An exception are guest kitchen and the lab but their usage has been scheduled in a way that only one project at a time can be conducted.

Despite the fact that restrictions have made it more difficult for the guests of the research station, the general atmosphere has been positive and respectful. On the contrary, most people are very appreciative that the station is open and that guest researchers are allowed to come. Of course, for some foreign researchers, the pandemic has posed problems. Therefore, the station staff tries to help them with their field work as much as possible and reasonable, but it is a “mission impossible” to take over 450 people´s field campaigns.

However, nothing bad without something good in it: usually the only calmer period happens during the dark half of the year and that is when the station staff can take care of the station and the five field cabins. During COVID-19 times there is some extra time to do things that are only visible and can be done in the snow- and ice-free period. In addition, it is also rewarding to be able to give a little extra support to the external researchers who are still at the station. Then, there are still mixed feelings about the next sampling season: many new projects, which were planned for this year, were forced to be postponed. So, the 80 beds available to host researchers conducting their projects in Abisko will face a higher demand next season…….

COVID-19 and its impact on Abisko Scientific Research Station - common areas are closed, social distancing is practiced including to avoid contact between station staff and guests; no less important: A good hand hygiene! Photographer: Magnus Augner.

The summer course in forest regeneration with its final field week in Asa was completed in August 2020.

The course goal is to give students insight in the complexity of forest regeneration in modern forestry in northern Europe and is open for master and PhD students with a background in forest science/forest management as well as ecology or environmental science.

The course is divided into three parts, with a field project, a literature study and a final field week situated at Asa Research Station.
The field projects are designed by the students and typically involve measurements of seedlings in the forest, the green house or a different designated site. The outcome is later presented in a poster session during the field week.
The literature study in combination with assignments aims to prepare the students for their field week in Asa which is considered the “heart” of the course.
During this week, the students learn about plant physiology, visit different kinds of regeneration areas and examine ongoing experiments in and around Asa and discuss the experimental designs.

Next to intensive days in the field, the students also attend a webinar with experts presenting their field of research such as plant short-day treatment, dormancy, genetics, etc.
Despite several challenges due to the Corona virus, the course responsible Kristina Wallertz and her team of skilled teachers could realize this year’s course much to the appreciation of the students. So far, 13 students have completed the course and students who couldn’t participate due to travel restrictions and illness will be welcome next year.
More information can be found here - In-depth course in forest regeneration
& PhD course Forest regeneration 2020.

Students got an insight into practical forestry when silviculture experts at Södra gave them a guided tour on their forest property in Attsjö outside Växjö.
Photographer: Kristina Wallertz.


One of many exercises during the field week was to dig up seedlings, here at a demonstration site in Asa. Photographer: Kristina Wallertz.

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