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Long-term dynamics of dreissenid mussels and their ecosystem effects

Alexander Karatayev, Lars Rudstam, Lyuba Burlakova, Kristen Holeck, Christopher Hotaling, Randy Jackson, Amy Hetherington, Boris Adamovich, Hanna Zhukava

Following a workshop at CBFS in 2017, we have continued to analyze long-term data on mussels and ecosystems in four polymictic lakes, three in Belarus (the Naroch system lakes) and Oneida Lake.  These four lakes may have the longest data sets documenting mussel effects on the ecosystem and the time scale of these changes.  There are indications of declining mussel effects with time in the Naroch lakes, which suggest that systems are resilient to change over periods of decades.  However, in Oneida Lake, the arrival of quagga mussels increased the biomass of mussels in the lake. We also have documented further declines in Daphnia abundance and chlorophyll concentrations, especially in early spring and late fall.  A manuscript is expected in 2020.