Adam Jeziorski, Research Professional

Paleoecological Environmental Assessment and Research Laboratory (PEARL)

Department of Biology, Queen's University

My research is focused on improving the understanding of anthropogenic influences upon aquatic ecosystems. My primary research tools are paleolimnological techniques, as the questions I'm interested in typically pre-date the onset of direct monitoring. Specifically, I use the invertebrate remains preserved in lake sediments to track long-term environmental change and assess the impact of multiple environmental stressors upon boreal lakes.

LakePulse survey sampling 680 lakes across Canada

Summer 2017: Green Team, 3 weeks
I was the Green Team leader for 3 weeks and principally responsible for collecting the sediment cores while also assisting with the optics measurements.

Research: Theme 1, Project 3 - How have Canadian lakes changed during the Anthropocene and which lakes are most susceptible to different stressors?

This project will perform a paleolimnological assessment of the lake sediments collected by the network. Lake sediments gradually accumulate over time, thus they can provide an archive of material dating back 100s or 1000s of years. By examining the remains of organisms preserved in the sediments we can infer past ecological conditions, and then by comparing the assemblages of remains from different depths, describe changes through time.

The sediment cores collected by the network will be used in a "top-bottom" analysis. The "top" slice or most recent sediments that contain recently deposited remains representative of current conditions will be compared with a "bottom" slice representative of earlier conditions in the lake (ideally pre-industrial). The "top-bottom" approach is well-suited to providing information on a large number of lakes and has proven effective in other large-scale surveys; however, it is unable to provide information on the timing of any observed changes. Therefore, continuous analyses of the last ~200 years of sediment will also be performed on a subset of the survey lakes.

My goals within the project are to characterize the chironomid sedimentary assemblages through time across multiple ecozones. Chironomids are a family of insects that spend their larval stages in aquatic environments and are a useful biological indicator of deepwater oxygen concentrations. Assessment of the chironomid assemblages will allow inferences of oxygen conditions and how they have changed across Canada since pre-industrial times, while also identifying hotspots of change.

Project start to finish dates: July 2017 to May 2021

Supervisor: Dr. John Smol

Adam-Jeziorski