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Wetland Dynamics

Wetlands are threatened and valuable ecosystems with multiple functions. In our group, we work on various aspects, such as the use of constructed wetlands for water pollution control, nutrient dynamics in natural and constructed wetlands, and structural shifts in shallow lake ecosystems.

Part of our work is focused on the function of wetlands as traps for the phosphorus (P) that is leaving agricultural fields in Sweden. Our most recent PhD, Karin Johannesson, was evaluating the P removal efficiency in different wetlands, and how to identify so called "hot-spots" in the landscape where phosphorus losses may be particularly high. In cooperation with Dr. Pia Kynkäänniemi and Prof. Barbro Ulén at SLU, Uppsala, she was studying the accumulation and resuspension of soil and phosphorus in constructed wetlands.  Look here to see what such a wetland might look like. Recently, we have turned our interest to larger scale nutrient flows in society and how to improve nutrient recycling to combat eutrohication. This interest is pursued together with the  SPABIO Lab in Theoretical Biology. This approach also links to the possiblity to use aquatic biomass for production of biogas and recycling of nutrients from eutrophic waters back to land, which is studied in a project within the Biogas Research Center

Nutrient dynamics is also central for ecosystem services provided by natural aquatic ecosystems such as wetlands and shallow eutrophic lakes. In such lakes interactions between nutrients and biota are known to result in structural shifts between two states, one dominated by submerged vegetation, the other by phytoplankton. These shifts have drastic consequences for biodiversity and ecosystems services such as nutrient cycling, recreational experiences and water purification. In our group we work on identification of feedback systems that tend to stabilise each state, or cause shifts between them. Lately, we include evolutionary aspects of the altered selection pressure that the shifts result in.

If you are a student interested in our research areas, check out the link to suggested MSc and BSc projects ("Exjobb"), and contact Karin, Anders or Karin.

Responsible for this page: Jordi Altimiras
Last updated: 10/23/15