Underwater Landscapes of the Apostle Islands

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In the upper Great Lakes region, the NPS protects diverse coastal environments in Lakes Michigan and Superior. Until recently, very little information existed with respect to the bathymetry, geomorphology, or benthic habitat features of these areas. Since 2010, NPS and partners have developed high resolution benthic habitat maps for six coastal parks in the Great Lakes, using a novel combination of LiDAR, multi-beam sonar, and satellite imagery.

In addition to high resolution bathymetry, we collected photo and video imagery to validate substrate and benthic features documented in our mapping efforts. In 2018, we began a pilot project at Apostle Islands using tools such as the Benthic Terrain Modeler to further describe lake floor habitat in several areas of the Apostles.

With this work we show features of the underwater landscape with detail previously not shown in bathymetric maps of the area. In pilot study areas, we use these details to further describe specific habitat features in an attempt to estimate areas that may be suitable for invasive dreissenid or native mussels.

Our goal is to ultimately use these tools for habitat descriptors of other species or to show habitat quality and suitability in areas where changes may be occurring due to impacts from coastal and upland erosion or other stressors. Importantly, this effort provides new opportunities for the NPS to engage with partner agencies and participate more fully in Great Lakes habitat assessment initiatives and coastal management and restoration efforts.

Jay Glase, National Park Service (NPS)
Presenter biography:
Jay Glase

Jay has been the NPS Midwest regional fishery biologist since 2002. Jay has been stationed in Ashland since 2011 and before that at Isle Royale headquarters in Houghton, Michigan.

Jay works primarily with parks in the upper Great Lakes area but also occasionally works with other Midwest region parks or on national fisheries issues within NPS.

Prior to his time at NPS, Jay was with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for 10 years where he worked on salmon and steelhead restoration efforts in Northern California. He’s a long-time-ago graduate of Northland College and Humboldt State University and is one of those affected by the Lake Superior bungee effect.

To sample more sessions choose below
50 Years of Archeology at the Apostle Islands

50 Years of Archeology at the Apostle Islands

As we look to the future of the Lakeshore, this knowledge will inform preservation planning and further study for ...
A Retrospective – Research and Resource Management at Apostle Islands NL

A Retrospective – Research and Resource Management at Apostle Islands NL

An overview of the history of natural resource management and research at the national lakeshore over the past 5 ...
A singing wilderness: Songbirds of the Apostle Islands

A singing wilderness: Songbirds of the Apostle Islands

Monitoring bird populations helps us keep an ear out for troubling changes in the island soundtrack.
A Vulnerability Assessment for Terrestrial Ecosystems

A Vulnerability Assessment for Terrestrial Ecosystems

How might climate change affect Apostle Islands National Lakeshore? It’s a simple question with lots of potential ...
American Martens on the Apostle Islands

American Martens on the Apostle Islands

Our findings suggest that the Apostle Islands were naturally recolonized by progeny of translocated individuals ...
Amphibians of the Apostle Islands

Amphibians of the Apostle Islands

The Apostles support 6 species of salamanders and 7-9 species of frogs.
Apostle Islands Flora

Apostle Islands Flora

Diverse physical landforms and a variety of habitats contribute to the high total plant diversity of 810+ species ...
Emerging Water Resource Issues in the Apostle Islands

Emerging Water Resource Issues in the Apostle Islands

The lake is big, omnipresent, and seemingly resistant to change. However, a closer look reveals a variety of ...
Fifty Years of Cultural Resource Research at Apostle Islands NL

Fifty Years of Cultural Resource Research at Apostle Islands NL

This presentation will look at the Lakeshore’s half century of efforts to study, understand, and steward these ...
Gaylord Nelson: mover, shaker, deal-maker

Gaylord Nelson: mover, shaker, deal-maker

Without Gaylord Nelson’s unmatched political acumen and years of commitment to public service, the Apostle Islands ...
Longitudinal Trends and Ecology of the Small Mammal Community

Longitudinal Trends and Ecology of the Small Mammal Community

Long-term changes in small mammal populations across the archipelago likely reflect reduction of human extractive ...
New Insights Into the Dynamics of Apostle Islands Carnivore Communities

New Insights Into the Dynamics of Apostle Islands Carnivore Communities

To determine how human activity and footprint affect the spatiotemporal activity of wildlife on the Apostle ...
Past, Present and Future of Fire in the Apostle Islands

Past, Present and Future of Fire in the Apostle Islands

We reconstructed fire history from fire-scarred red pine stumps collected on Stockton Island tombolo to better ...
Past, present and future of fisheries management in the Apostle Islands

Past, present and future of fisheries management in the Apostle Islands

New challenges are emerging and will direct fisheries management for the future.
Past, present, and future of piping plovers in the Apostle Islands

Past, present, and future of piping plovers in the Apostle Islands

Partnerships with tribal, state, and federal officials have been key to monitoring piping plovers in the islands.
Resiliency and vulnerability of Apostle Islands coastal wetlands

Resiliency and vulnerability of Apostle Islands coastal wetlands

We investigated wetland hydrology, geomorphology, vegetation, macro-invertebrates, and fish to identify ...
Through the eyes of 4th graders

Through the eyes of 4th graders

Through the Eyes of Fourth Graders is a book written and illustrated by students about their experiences in the ...
Traditional Ecological Knowledge

Traditional Ecological Knowledge

What is TEK? How does it relate to scientific knowledge? Traditional knowledge is embedded within the very fabric ...
Under the surface and Zaaga’igan Ma’iinganag (lakewolves)

Under the surface and Zaaga’igan Ma’iinganag (lakewolves)

In this presentation, program directors Ian Karl and Toben Lafrançois highlight the photos and reflections from ...
Underwater Landscapes of the Apostle Islands

Underwater Landscapes of the Apostle Islands

Since 2010, NPS and partners have developed high resolution benthic habitat maps for six coastal parks in the ...

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