Projects/Activities

The full list of projects contains the entire database hosted on this portal, across the available directories. The projects and activities (across all directories/catalogs) are also available by country of origin, by geographical region, or by directory.

Displaying: 1 - 20 of 20
1. Biological monitoring of lakes and rivers

Program collects data of fresh water phytoplankton, phytobenthos, aquatic invertebrates, fish and plants. It intends to reach sufficient data to assess biological quality of water bodies and monitor their change in time. The program is designed to answer the needs of ecological classification determined by Water Framework Directive. The program is managed by Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), Regional centres for economic development, transport and the environment (ELY-centre) and Natural Resource Institute Finland. Observations are done in the monitoring of water quality network and in specially designed network for anthropogenically eutrophicated lakes and rivers. Monitoring frequency varies between the locations and measured elements.

aquatic monitoring Biodiversity Biological effects Biology diatoms Fish lakes macrophytes phytobenthos phytoplankton rivers surface water zoobenthos
2. DiskoBasis -Ecosystem monitoring at Arctic Station

In 2013 a new ecosystem monitoring programme “DiskoBasis” was initiated at Arctic Station on Disko Island, Greenland. The project is partly funded by the Danish Energy Agency. The primary objective of DiskoBasis is to establish baseline knowledge on the dynamics of fundamental physical parameters within the environment/ecosystem around Arctic Station. This initiative extends and complements the existing monitoring carried out at Arctic Station by including several new activities –especially within the terrestrial and hydrological/fluvial field. DiskoBasis include collection of data in the following sub-topics; • Gas flux, meteorology and energy balance • Snow, ice and permafrost • Soil and soil water chemistry • Vegetation phenology • Hydrology -River water discharge and chemistry • Limnology -Lake water chemistry • Marine -Sea water chemistry

Arctic Catchment studies Climate Climate change Climate variability CO2-flux measurements Discharges Ecosystems Geochemistry Geophysics Hydrography Ice Limnology Permafrost Sea ice Soils
3. Environmental Monitoring System for Svalbard and Jan Mayen

MOSJ (Environmental Monitoring of Svalbard and Jan Mayen) is an environmental monitoring system and part of the Government’s environmental monitoring in Norway. An important function is to provide a basis for seeing whether the political targets set for the development of the environment in the North are being attained

Atmosphere Ecosystems Human health Oceanography
4. Zooplankton Monitoring in the European Arctic Gateway (ZooMon-EAG)

Zooplankton make essential links between producers and predators in marine ecosystems, so mediating in the CO2 exchange between atmosphere and ocean They can be indicators of climate variability, and changes in zooplankton species distribution and abundance may have cascading effects on food webs. West Spitsbergen Current is the main pathway of transport of Atlantic waters and biota into the Arctic Ocean and the Arctic shelf seas. West Spitsbergen Shelf coastal and fjordic waters, therefore, are natural experimental areas to study mechanisms by which the Atlantic and Arctic marine ecosystem interact, and to observe environmental changes caused by variability in climate. The main objectives of the zooplankton monitoring are: a) to study patterns and variability in composition and abundance in zooplankton of the West Spitsbergen Current and the West Spitsbergen fjords and coastal waters; b) to find out environmental factors responsible for the observed patterns and variability in zooplankton, and to understand possible relations between zooplankton and their environment on different space and time scales; c) to observe and monitor the variability in zooplankton in relation to local and global climate changes.

Ecosystems zooplankton
5. LTER HAUSGARTEN

Multidisciplinary investigations at the LTER (Long-Term Ecological Research) observatory HAUSGARTEN are carried out at a total of 21 permanent sampling sites in water depths ranging between 250 and 5,500 m. From the outset, repeated sampling in the water column and at the deep seafloor during regular expeditions in summer months was complemented by continuous year-round sampling and sensing using autonomous instruments in anchored devices (i.e., moorings and free-falling systems). The central HAUSGARTEN station at 2,500 m water depth in the eastern Fram Strait serves as an experimental area for unique biological in situ experiments at the seafloor, simulating various scenarios in changing environmental settings. Time-series studies at the HAUSGARTEN observatory, covering almost all compartments of the marine ecosystem, provide insights into processes and dynamics within an arctic marine ecosystem and act as a baseline for further investigations of ongoing changes in the Fram Strait. Long-term observations at HAUSGARTEN will significantly contribute to the global community’s efforts to understand variations in ecosystem structure and functioning on seasonal to decadal time-scales in an overall warming Arctic and will allow for improved future predictions under different climate scenarios.

Biodiversity carbon flux Climate change ecology Ice Marine benthos marine ecosystem monitoring Oceanography Plankton
6. Monitoring of agriculture and forestry induced diffuse load in surface and ground water

The aim is to observe long term effects of land use practices on waters. Monitoring concerns specific locations, where diffuse loads of nutrient or pollutants of agricultural and forestry origin poses a significant risk on water quality. Monitoring includes biological and physio-chemical elements. The program is part of monitoring according to the Water Framework Directive. It is coordinated by Finnish Environmental Institute (SYKE).

pollution Biological effects Biology diffuse load Fish Environmental management Biodiversity eutrofication forestry. agriculture Ecosystems
7. Contaminants in Polar Regions – Dynamic Range of Contaminants in Polar Marine Ecosystems (COPOL)

The IPY-project ‘COPOL’ has a main objective of understanding the dynamic range of man-made contaminants in marine ecosystems of polar regions, in order to better predict how possible future climate change will be reflected in levels and effects at higher trophic levels. This aim will be addressed by 4 integrated work packages covering the scopes of 1) food web contaminant exposure and flux, 2) transfer to higher trophic levels and potential effects, 3) chemical analyses and screening, 4) synthesis and integration. To study the relations between climate and environmental contaminants within a project period of four years, a “location-substitutes-time”-approach will be employed. The sampling is focussed towards specific areas in the Arctic, representing different climatic conditions. Two areas that are influenced differently by different water masses are chosen; the Kongsfjord on the West-coast of Spitzbergen (79N, 12 E) and the Rijpfjord North-East of Svalbard (80N, 22 E). The main effort is concentrated in the Kongsfjord. This fjord has been identified as particularly suitable as a study site of contaminants processes, due to the remoteness of sources, and for influences of climatic changes, due to the documented relation between Atlantic water influx and the climatic index North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). The water masses of the Rijpfjord have Arctic origin and serves as a strictly Arctic reference. Variable Atlantic water influx will not only influence abiotic contaminant exposure, but also food web structure, food quality and energy pathways, as different water masses carry different phyto- and zooplankton assemblages. This may affect the flux of contaminants through the food web to high trophic level predators such as seabirds and seals, due to altered food quality and energy pathways.

Biological effects Organochlorines Heavy metals Fish Climate variability Long-range transport Climate Contaminant transport Climate change Exposure Arctic Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) Local pollution Seabirds Food webs Ecosystems
8. Nuuk Basic-Pilot study

The Nuuk-Basic project aims to establish a climate monitoring programme on the westcoast of Greenland. During two workshops, one being in Nuuk with field survey, framework for a future climate monitoring programme will be established. The programme builds on the concept and institutions already performing climate monitoring in NE-Greenland through ZERO (Zackenberg Ecological Research Operations).

Biological effects Climate change Biodiversity Ecosystems
9. ZERO-database

The ZERO database contains all validated data from the Zackenberg Ecological Research Operations Basic Programmes (ClimateBasis, GeoBasis, BioBasis and MarinBasis). The purpose of the project is to run and update the database with new validated data after each succesfull field season. Data will be available for the public through the Zackenberg homepage linking to the NERI database. The yearly update is dependent on that each Basis programme delivers validated data in the proscribed format.

Biological effects Hydrography Geophysics Climate Polar bear GIS Sediments Marine mammals Biology Populations Soils UV radiation Fish Discharges Sea ice Climate change Terrestrial mammals Ice Biodiversity River ice Arctic Seabirds Geochemistry Reproduction Permafrost Ecosystems
10. The fate of Hg in the marine food web along west Greenland

The aim of the project is to describe and model mercury accumulation up the Arctic food chain. Based on existing knowledge from old projects and new measurements made on frozen tissue samples. This project will contribute to a better understanding of the fate of mercury in the Arctic.

Heavy metals Food webs
11. Effects of UV radiation on lipids, fatty acids and nutritional quality of Arctic marine algae and zooplankton

This project investigates how solar UV radiation affects planktonic food webs in the Arctic by changing the nutritional quality of the lower trophic levels. UV radiation has been documented to lead to oxidation of poly-unsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) in phytoplankton. These PUFAs cannot be synthesized de novo by zooplankton, but are key molecules for the marine pelagic food web. A combined approach was chosen with both sampling of field data (physical as well as biological) and experiments which were carried out during two field seasons in Ny Ålesund in 2003 (april/may) and 2004 (may/june). In 2004, the main part of the field work consisted of an outdoor experiment where phytoplankton was exposed to different irradiation regimes, using the natural sunlight. Algae from all different treatments were used for feeding zooplankton in order to trace the transfer of irradiation-induced changes of the fatty acid composition in phytoplankton to the next trophic level. A number of additional parameters will be analysed as well, combined with the results of an extensive measurement series of both PAR- and UV light. The experiment was carried out on the old pier (Gamle Kaia), while the laboratory part took place in the Italian station ‘Dirigibile Italia’.

Calanus glacialis Biological effects UV radiation fatty acid composition trophic transfer diatoms lipids
12. Interactions between meiofauna and mat-forming microbes at the sediment-water interface - implications for benthic-pelagic coupling in coastal systems

The project investigated small-scale biotic interactions between laminated microbial communities and meiofauna at light-exposed sediment-water boundaries of estuarine lagoons. The production and biological structure of these systems is mainly determined by complex processes at the sediment-water interface which depend on finely scaled patterns, requiring appreciation of how the biota interact within these scales. We tested whether changing light conditions and active emergence of the harpacticoid species Mesochra lilljeborgi and Tachidius discipes are mediated by the activity of benthic oxygenic and anoxygenic phototrophic microbes. Two hypotheses were tested which addresses to the question of causality between changing light conditions and active emergence of the harpacticoid copepods. (1)The harpacticoid copepods T. discipes and M. lilljeborgi will enter the bottom water during daylight when oxygenic photosynthesis of cyanobacteria and eukaryotic algae is blocked and conditions at the sediment-water interface have turned anoxic. (2)Both species will not emerge during dark exposures when transferred to sterilized sediments.

Biological effects Biology copepod microbial communities interactions Sediments Ecosystems
13. Life cycle strategies linked to adult development and reproduction in the Northern krill, Meganyctiphanes norvegica. Study of the Gullmarsfjorden population.

To recognize some life cycle strategies linked to adult development and reproduction in the Northern krill, Meganyctiphanes norvegica, in the Gullmarsfjorden population. Sampling of krill and analyses of the distribution of sex, body-size, moult and reproductive development stages.

Biology Meganyctiphanes norvegica krill life cycle
14. Metabolic and behavioural reactions of Nordic krill, Meganyctiphanes norvegica, from Gullmarsfjorden towards environmental factors

The phsyiological and locomotive reaction to factors that influence environmental behaviour of Nordic krill from the Gullmarfjorden were studied in terms of swimming energetics, predator avoidence and food utilization. In a newly developed experimental approach, individuals were maintained under defined conditions in flow through chambers and continuously monitored for swimming activity and oxygen consumption. Chemical, physical and biological parameters were applied and the reaction of the krill determined. Stress levels, defined this way, will serve as a reference for unfavourable conditions in the field. Thermal characteristics of digestive enzymes from the midgut gland were furthermore identify the optimum conditions for nutrient assimilation. The results will contribute to the understanding of diel vertical migration, dispersion and aggregation of krill which, in turn is essential for the interpretation of ecosystem dynamics and trophic interactions.

Biological effects Biology krill predator avoidence swimming energetics food utilization oxygen consumption
15. Relative importance of different sources of particulate matter in the Kongsfjorden environment

The general objective of this research concerns the quantitative and qualitative study of particulate matter retained in natural (sea-ice and sediment) and artificial (sediment traps) traps in order to determine the main origin (autochtonous and allochtonous) and the relative importance of different fractions of particulate matter and to follow their fate in the environment. To quantify the autochtonous origin of particulate matter, primary production, nutrient uptake, biomass distribution, phytoplankton community structure and fluxes in the first levels of the trophic chain will be investigated. Studies will be conducted in the sea-ice environment and in the water column and compared to the particle fluxes measured both in the water, using sediment traps and in the sediment, by radiometric chronology, in order to estimate the different contribution of these habitats to carbon export to the bottom. The zooplankton will be identified and counted and primary production, nutrient uptake and phytoplankton dynamics will be related to hydrological structure and nutrient availability in the environment. The Kongsfjord results particularly suitable for the main objective of this research as it is influenced by important inputs of both atmospheric (eolic and meteroric) and glacial origin and is characterised by a complex hydrological situation which may promote autochtonous productive processes, thus determining important particulate fluxes.

athmospheric carbon dioxide Biological effects Biology Arctic haze Hydrography inorganic and organic nutrients particulate Sea ice Ice Oceanography Biodiversity Arctic Ice cores Data management Atmosphere Ocean currents phytoplankton sediment radiometric chronology zooplankton
16. Energetics of copepods in non-steady state food conditions

Most studies of energetics in marine filter feeders have focused on animals living in steady state food conditions. However, copepods experience highly variable access to food because of food patchiness and behavioural avoidance of predators. For small copepods this is especially important since they lack the potential of energy storage, e.g. in the form of lipids. After a period of food deprivation Acartia tonsa show a compensatory increase in ingestion rate, but only temporarily and on the time scale of the gut filling time. The copepods are able to compensate for the lacking input of food. On the other hand, longer periods of starvation (6-14h) induce elevated ingestion rates that lasts longer than gut filling time. Under these circumstances other energetic factors influence the ingestion rate. Consequently, the energetics of the copepods are highly variable in a patchy food environment.

Biology ingestion rate energetics food patchiness copepods Food webs
17. An experimental study on stable carbon and nitrogen isotope fractionation by Meganyctiphanes norvegica - the influence of food source, assimilation efficiency and growth rate

The aim of our visit to Kristineberg was to study the stable carbon and nitrogen isotope fractionation of Meganyctiphanes norvegica in response to different food supply, and to evaluate the importance of physiological processes (assimilation and growth) in generating the new stable isotope pattern. This calibration will contribute to the evaluation of the stable isotope method as an approach to the study of food sources of animals in the field.

food Biology Meganyctiphanes norvegica krill Diet
18. Bacterial populations in the pelagic foodweb

Since nearly all microalgae are associated with bacteria and some harbor intracellular bacteria, it is most likely that these bacteria are involved in the development or termination of natural occurring plankton assemblages. The diversity and development of associated bacteria in microalgae cultures and during phytoplankton succession will be described by molecular analysis of the bacterial community structure and by phylogenetic analysis of involved microorganisms.

Shelf seas Biological effects Biodiversity
19. Helgoland Foodweb Project

To study the organisms involved in phytoplankton succession and the Key factors involved. This includes Bacteria-Algae, Algae-zooplankton and Zooplankton-Fish interactions. Aspects such as algal-grazer defence mechanisms and digestability of alage are core topics.

Biology Environmental management Biodiversity Ecosystems
20. Effects of UV-B radiation on Microbial communities in Kongsfjorden

Effects of UV-B radiation on microbial communities in Kongsfjorden in relation to metal and dissolved organic matter availabillity.

Biological effects Ozone Biology UV radiation Heavy metals Environmental management Exposure Arctic Model ecosystem Ecosystems