Dr. Pace's research focuses on food webs and biogeochemical processes in aquatic ecosystems. He seeks to understand and predict properties of aquatic ecosystems from external watershed characteristics and from internal ecological interactions.
What is the importance of terrestrial organic matter to aquatic food webs?
"Using carbon-13 additions to entire lakes we are determining whether the carbon supporting consumers, including fish, arises from internal primary production or external inputs of terrestrial organic matter."
Do nutrients associated with sewage inputs promote bacterial degradation of organic matter?
"Bacterial growth and respiration is enhanced in the Albany region of the Hudson River, an area that also receives inputs from sewage treatment plants and combined sewer overflows. Treated sewage is rich in nitrogen and phosphorus. We are studying if these nutrients promote bacterial activity and facilitate the degradation of organic matter."
What controls the variation of dissolved organic matter in lake ecosystems?
"Lakes receive inputs of dissolved organic matter from their surrounding watersheds. Heavy concentrations of this material give lakes a tea to coffee-like color. We are using data from hundreds of watersheds in the Adirondack Park to explore the relationships between lake color and the spatial patterns of wetlands and forests in the landscape."
- View All