Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
Environmental Science and Biology
This master thesis analyzes the condition of diatoms the Irondequoit Bay. The author was able to gather data from the past 150 years of the Bay’s history. Three core samples were taken from the bay, and each core was given a different test. These tests include diatom analysis, radiometric dating and sediment chemistry. Using these three tests the author was able to determine the condition of diatoms, the time period tested, and the water quality respectively.
The research suggests that the diversity of diatoms found within the bay coincide with events of human interaction with the bay itself. Diatom composition had the greatest biodiversity in 1862, when human interaction was minimal. After this point diatom diversity continued to decline until the year 1924. At which point it rose, only to decrease again in 1942. Irondequoit Bay’s biodiversity continued to move up and down until the 1980’s when it eventually stabilized. Data collected including scientific drawings of diatoms, a map of Irondequoit Bay, and a timeline of human events relating to the bay is included in the Appendix.
Verna, Anthony L., "The Paleolimnology of Irondequoit Bay: Trophic History Inferred from Sedimentary Diatom Assemblages" (1995). Environmental Science and Ecology Theses. 96.