The Antarctic continent carries the greatest diversity of lake environments on the planet: freshwater and saline lakes, tidal freshwater epishelf lakes, lakes on ice shelves and glacier surfaces, and over three hundred subglacial lakes; extraordinary ecosystems that have been separated from the atmosphere for up to millions of years. Antarctic Lakes provides a unique and cutting edge synthesis of Antarctic limnology, drawing together current knowledge on geomorphology, morphometry, chemistry, community structure and function. It emphasises throughout the value of these near-pristine ecosystems as barometers of climate change, showing how responsive and vulnerable they are to the indirect impacts of anthropogenic activity.
Antarctic Lakes begins with an introduction to their physical, chemical, and biological characteristics, providing a basis for understanding the subsequent detailed chapters on different lake types, and ends with a chapter considering the application of new technologies to polar limnology as well as identifying future research directions. This accessible text is suitable for both senior undergraduate and graduate students taking courses in Antarctic and polar limnology, and will also be of broad interest to researchers working in the areas of polar science, microbial ecology (and extremophiles), climatology, glaciology, and astrobiology.
1: An Introduction to Antarctic Lakes
2: Freshwater Lakes
3: Saline Lakes
4: Epishelf Lakes
5: Lakes and Ponds on Glaciers and Ice Shelves
6: Subglacial Lakes
7: Conclusions and Future Directions
Professor Johanna Laybourn-Parry has spent most of her career investigating lakes and aquatic habitats on glaciers in both the Arctic and Antarctic. She has written four books as sole and co-author and co-edited a volume on Polar Lakes and Rivers. She has published 160 plus articles and reviews. She retired as Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research at the University of Tasmania at the end of 2009 and is now a visiting Professor in the Bristol Glaciology Centre, University of Bristol.
Professor Jemma L Wadham is a low temperature biogeochemist whose work focuses on biogeochemical processes in glacial ecosystems and their impact on global biogeochemical cycles. She has written over 60 science articles and worked extensively in the Polar Regions, including the Antarctic and the Greenland Ice Sheets. She was awarded a Phillip Leverhulme Prize in October 2007 for her substantial and recognized international contribution to Polar Science. She has been strongly involved with the International Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research, SCAR, and subglacial science in Antarctica.
"This is a very well written book that introduces Antarctic Lakes to the international science community [...] [A] valuable compilation and synthesis for those interested in limnology in general and in the polar regions and extreme environments in particular."
– Clive Howard-Williams, Journal of Plankton Research
"The authors' expertise in microbial ecology and biogeochemistry allows a complete, interdisciplinary presentation of lake processes [...] The book is well-written and illustrated."
– Sarah A. Spaulding, Arctic, Antarctic and Alpine Research
"Ultimately, the authors have succeeded in producing a single volume that serves both as a reference for those researching Antarctic lakes as well as an informative volume for those with limited experience in this subject."