By Kelsey Boeff, Friends of Acadia Aquatic Scientist
The buoy, which monitors the water quality of Jordan Pond, has just been deployed for its second year. The deployment of the buoy is exciting because it allows us to continue our ecological data collection initiative for the lake. Past blogs, written by Dr. Courtney Wigdahl, have outlined the breadth of the data collected by the buoy, which include temperature profiles, pH, conductivity, light, fDOM (organic matter), and chlorophyll. In addition to the buoy, our weather station is also up and running again. Both the weather station and buoy collected measurements every 15 minutes and can be accessed remotely using our project computer, so I will monitor the data daily to ensure everything is running smoothly.
Every two weeks, we will boat out to the buoy to clean it and calibrate its sensors. This will help to ensure the data we are collecting are as accurate as possible. To make the calibration process easier this time around, we purchased a new handheld device that will allow us to connect to the sensors wirelessly. This is a big improvement over last year, when we had to take our laptop out on the boat with us—very nerve wracking!
This project is possible thanks to a partnership between the University of Maine and Acadia National Park, and funding for the project has been provided by Canon. All of the data gathered from the buoy (over 11,000 measurements last year) will help researchers better understand the ecology of Jordan Pond. Importantly, the buoy will help provide insight into why the pond has been experiencing reduced clarity over the last few years. Jordan Pond is considered the clearest lake in Maine, so figuring out why the lake is becoming less clear will help researchers understand what is changing in Jordan Pond and in other important Maine lakes as well.
Periodically over course of the summer, those involved in the project will be posting updates about the buoy. If you have any questions that you would like to see covered in future blog posts, feel free to leave a comment here. We’d be happy to answer your questions!