Diel Surface Temperature Range Scales with Lake Size


Ecological and biogeochemical processes in lakes are strongly dependent upon water temperature. Long-term surface warming of many lakes is unequivocal, but little is known about the comparative magnitude of temperature variation at diel timescales, due to a lack of appropriately resolved data. Here we quantify the pattern and magnitude of diel temperature variability of surface waters using high-frequency data from 100 lakes. We show that the near-surface diel temperature range can be substantial in summer relative to long-term change and, for lakes smaller than 3 km2, increases sharply and predictably with decreasing lake area. Most small lakes included in this study experience average summer diel ranges in their near-surface temperatures of between 4 and 7°C. Large diel temperature fluctuations in the majority of lakes undoubtedly influence their structure, function and role in biogeochemical cycles, but the full implications remain largely unexplored.

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0152466

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@inproceedings{Woolway2016DielST, title={Diel Surface Temperature Range Scales with Lake Size}, author={R. Iestyn Woolway and Ian D. Jones and Stephen C. Maberly and Jon R. French and David M. Livingstone and Donald T. Monteith and Gavin L. Simpson and Stephen J. Thackeray and Mikkel R. Andersen and Richard W. Battarbee and Curtis L. DeGasperi and Christopher D. Evans and Elvira de Eyto and Heidrun Feuchtmayr and David P. Hamilton and Martin Kernan and Jan Krokowski and Alon Rimmer and Kevin C. Rose and James A. Rusak and David B. Ryves and Daniel R. Scott and Ewan M. Shilland and Robyn L. Smyth and Peter A. Staehr and Rhian Thomas and Susan Waldron and Gesa A. Weyhenmeyer}, booktitle={PloS one}, year={2016} }