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Dec 13

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Too Little Phosphorus

The lowdown on phosphorus levels… Listen up:

Mussels are great water filters, but too many can do more harm than good.

Excess phosphorus is a problem in many parts of the Great Lakes. But in Saginaw bay, invasive mussels are removing so much that there’s not enough making its way to the deep waters of Lake Huron.

Craig Stow of the NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Lab says when phosphorus levels are low…

“What you see is a decrease in productivity in the lake. There’s less phytoplankton.”

Fewer phytoplankton means less food for small fish and ultimately larger fish too, like salmon and lake trout. So while too much phosphorus is a problem, too little is also a low blow for the ecosystem.

Hear More:

Listen to Craig Stow talk about how phosphorus enters Lake Huron:

Get Schooled:

 The Fine Print:

 

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.currentcast.org/biodiversity/too-little-phosphorus/