University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

Media Memo
News Bureau . Schofield Hall 201 . Eau Claire, WI 54702
phone: (715) 836-4741
fax: (715) 836-2900

Pine Lake monitoring project - UW-Eau Claire student/public teachers
 MAILED:  August 5, 2003

On Wednesday, Aug. 6, Sara Schmidt - a May 2003 UW-Eau Claire biology graduate - will take two K-12 teachers out on Pine Lake in northwestern Wisconsin to gather water samples used to monitor the quality of the lake water.

The teachers who will join Schmidt on the outing are participating in the Cray Academy. The trip to Pine Lake (about an hour north of Eau Claire) is an opportunity for them to become familiar with simple collection equipment and sampling techniques related to aquatic habitats and to apply knowledge obtained in the outdoors into a lab or classroom setting.

Dr. Kristina Beuning, an assistant professor of biology at UW-Eau Claire, oversees the Pine Lake project. She is working with the Cray Academy to provide the teachers with a field experience.

For more than 30 years, UW-Eau Claire faculty and students have been monitoring Pine Lake. Faculty and students measure water clarity, temperature, oxygen, phosphorus, nitrogen and chlorophyll. In addition, they look at the types of microscopic plankton that are present in the lake. UW-Eau Claire researchers take samples from the lake weekly (with Wednesday being the scheduled collection date this week) in the summer and monthly in the winter.

Beuning and Schmidt are writing a book that synthesizes all of the research done on the lake for the last 100 years. The book is to be published this fall.

The Pine Lake Association funds the water-monitoring project.

Schmidt and the teachers will return to campus with the water samples by 2 p.m. Wednesday. They will then do the analysis of the samples in Beuning's lab.

The media is welcome to visit the lab during the analysis to talk with Schmidt, the teachers and/or Beuning about the importance of science education and/or the Pine Lake project.

To make arrangements to visit the lab and interview Beuning, Schmidt and/or the K-12 teachers, contact Kristina Beuning at or (715) 836-6014.

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 Judy Berthiaume, Director
UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
Schofield 201
(715) 836-4741

Updated: December 28, 2004