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Water Stewardship Division

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On-Going Research

As part of the scientific activities related to Water Stewardship Division's Nutrient Management Strategy, considerable water quality work is being undertaken on Lake Winnipeg to better understand its existing condition, and to develop a water quality model to assist with managing inputs of nutrients.

Winter Water Quality Samplling on Lake Winnipeg Water Sampling Ponar Sampler Kemmler Sampler

Excessive concentrations of nitrogen and phosphorus in Lake Winnipeg are causing gradual changes to occur in the lake's water quality and biological communities.  Nutrients are contributed from virtually all of our activities in the lake's watershed.  These nutrients are directly associated with the production of nuisance growths of algae - affecting fish habitat, recreation, drinking water quality, and clogging fishing nets.  Some nuisance growths of algae can also produce toxins.



Water samples are collected four times per year at locations around the lake and analysed for a wide variety of variables including nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus, chlorophyll a (a measure of algae biomass), metals, pesticides, dissolved oxygen, and others. Work on the lake is conducted in cooperation with other participants in the Lake Winnipeg Research Consortium. The organisms living in the sediments at the bottom of the lake are examined once per year at each location as an indicator of ecosystem health.
  
Locations where water samples and/or bottom sediments have been collected by participants in the Lake Winnipeg Research Consortium.