Saturday, October 16, 2010
I discovered a fascinating underwater video on YouTube of Green Lake, of Green Lake State Park, between Chittenango and Fayetteville, NY. We had visited the park several years ago (before I started blogging), and have not had the opportunity to return. The trails around the lake are stupendous. You can divert the trails from time to time to explore the banks of the lakes. I was thrilled to find a video of the lake.
Green Lake and Round Lake in the park are meromictic lakes. This means that the top and bottom water layers do not mix. In a typical lake, wind, rainfall, temperature changes, and other causes will stir up the lake contents, mixing the lake layers. However, the layers of a meromictic lake do not mix together. The bottom layer is usually a brine, a "heavy" water solution that sits at the bottom. The sediments at the bottom are usually very well preserved, encapsulating very ancient aquatic and plant life. There is also very little oxygen within the lower levels of meromictic lakes; if fish swim too deep in such lakes, they die from oxygen starvation. Moreover, meromictic lakes usually have a pretty greenish hue to them, caused by the bacteria and algae that love these briny waters. When we visited Green Lake, we were very impressed with the beautiful green color. The vista would be perfect for a calendar or for presentation covers, it was so lovely.
Here is the video. It was taken by an underwater robot. Notice the amazing mosses and rock formations! (The background music is awful, be forewarned!)
New York State is home to several meromictic lakes. Besides Green Lake and Round Lake, other meromictic lakes in the state include Glacier Lake, Irodequoit Bay (it is believed that excessive road salt has turned the bay into a meromictic body of water!), Devil's Bathtub near Rochester, and Ballston Lake near Albany.