Sponsored by the NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, CIGLR leads exciting new research, trains the next generation of scientists, and turns research into action for safe and healthy Great Lakes communities.
$48 million invested in Great Lakes health & safety
590 people prepared for STEM careers
$10 million committed to clean drinking water
> 750 jobs supported
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Invasive species are perhaps the greatest stressor currently facing the Great Lakes aquatic ecosystem. Some of them, like the Asian carps, have been identified as potential invasive species. Asian carp are highly abundant in the Illinois River and have been captured 47 miles away from Lake Michigan. They threaten to invade the Great Lakes and disrupt aquatic food webs and fisheries through their voracious consumption of large volumes of plankton. CIGLR has produced models for Lake Erie that show if Asian carps were to invade, they would dominate the fish community and seriously devalue the vital recreational and commercial fisheries present there. Currently, Dr. Hongyan Zhang, Peter Alsip (University of Michigan graduate student) and colleagues are working to develop similar ecosystem models to assess the Asian carp threat in the other Great Lakes and their embayments.
Specialists at U-M’s Cooperative Institute for Great Lakes Research are getting out of the lab and onto the lakes, enlisting those whose livelihoods depend on clean water.
Let’s meet CIGLR Aquatic Ecology Research Tech, Christine Kitchens. She is a recent 2017 graduate from the University of Michigan School for Environment and Sustainability. She completed her graduate work with CIGLR Research Scientist Dr. Thomas Johengen; and currently, she works full-time with CIGLR monitoring summer harmful algal blooms in Western Lake Erie and Saginaw Bay, Lake Huron. In a “CIGLR Minute” Christine highlights her work and research and talks about what she enjoys most about her job and working on the Great Lakes.