BIO3210 River & Lake Biology

Course Overview

Educational Level: Upper undergraduate, Bachelor
Credit Hours: 3 Credits
Instructor: Prof. Magdalene Ngeve

Course Description:

Although only 1% of the Earths’s water is fresh, freshwater ecology is very fundamental. This course focuses on five aspects of Freshwater ecology. (1) Fundamentals of the origin and age of rivers and lakes, lake morphometry and river and lake catchment properties. (2) Focus on te physicochemical parameters of aquatic systems, as well as the underlying concepts. (3) River and lake biotics, such as phytoplankton, zooplankton, macroinvertebrates, etc, in running and standing waters. (4) The inter-relationship between both biotic and abiotic aspects of these water bodies; addressed in the context of food web interactions. Emphasis will be laid on shallow lakes and concepts of cascading trophic interactions, alternative stable states, niche shifts, succession, and trophic concepts. (5) Finally, discussion on the effect of anthropogenic pressure on these systems would be made in the light of contamination and eutrophication; Concepts of biomonitoring, restoration, rehabilitation, and biomanipulation will also be discussed as part of remediation efforts

How This Course Benefits Students:

Students will be able to (1) form an idea of the diversity of the chemical composition of aquatic ecosystems and of the origin of different classifications; (2) explain the main processes of a lake as an ecosystem as a function of seasonal variations and vertical gradients; (3) place the trophic status of ‘stationary waters’ in the broader context of their evolution; amongst others

Why This Course Is Important:

The extensive coverage of the course material will present students with holistic understanding of marine biology and equipe them with skills for dealing with field exposure.