In order to use satellite data to map the trophic state of lakes regionally, it is first necessary to build models that relate satellite observations to the lake characteristics from a few lakes. To learn more about what a model is a how it is built, click on "Building a model" on the menu panel at left.
The more data we obtain for the largest variety of lakes, the better the models we can develop to predict trophic state in unsampled lakes lakes.
And the problem isn't just sampling many lakes. Timing is also of importance. Sampling on any date won't work. We need samples taken as close to the date of satellite overpass as possible. Based on our experience, the lakes should be sampled within three days of a satellite overpass. This is because water transparency and algal biomass can vary dramatically within weeks. Even within days!
That's where a collaboration with a lake monitoring volunteer program becomes indispensable: without volunteers, it would be impossible to collect enough data on enough lakes and on the right dates.
If you are a volunteer and participate in this project, here you will find information about when to sample your lake. You can also see what other lakes are part of the volunteer program.
If you are not a volunteer but would be interested in learning more about this Wisconsin DNR program, please contact Maureen Janson.
Here's how to find out when to sample your lake:
Would you like to learn more about satellites and remote sensing? We have put together a selection of sites with interesting content and astonishing visuals in our "Lakes from Space" page.
To whet your appetite, here are some quick links: