Limnological research station at lake Gossenkölle

Lake Gossenkölle is an alpine lake at an elevation of 2,416 m a.s.l. with a surface area of 1.6 ha. The lake is situated at Kühtai saddle in the Stubai alps.

The research station was erected in 1975 and refurbished in 1994. It is equipped with electricity and running water, a laboratory and accommodation for up to 6 persons. There is a weather station with online data transfer on the roof of the research station and a measuring buoy in the lake recording temperature, ph, O2 and conductivity when the lake surface is ice-free. Additionally, a boat and diving equipment for 2 persons are available for researchers.

Recent research at lake Gossenkölle is about aquatic organisms like bacteria, flagellates and copepods. There are also projects on atmospheric deposit and its impact on water chemistry, as well as on viruses in the lake. In winter, snow algae are studied on snow surfaces on and around the lake.

Additional to these research projects, an elaborate monitoring program is conducted at lake Gossenkölle. It is an LTER (Long-Term Ecological Research) site of the LTSER platform Tyrolean Alps and LTER Austria and a site of GLEON (Global Lake Ecological Observatory Network). The research station is also used for educational purposes for school kids as well as for undergraduates.


Recent projects

  • LTER Monitoringprogramm (Long Term Ecological Research, Plattform Tyrolean Alps)
  • GLEON (Global Lake Ecological Observatory Network, seit 2015)

Recent publications

  • Gattringer, d. et al. (2023): A comparative approach to confirm antibiotic-resistant microbes in the cryosphere. Front. Microbiol. 14,
  • Schreder, S. et al. (2023): Changes in air temperature, but not in precipitation, determine long-term trends in water chemistry of high mountain lakes of the Alps with and without rock glacier influence. Science of the Total Environment 905: 167750, 
  • Trumhová, K., Klimešová, V. & Pichrtová, M. (2022): Seasonal dynamics of the mats formed by conjugating algae of the genus Zygnema (Zygnematophyceae) in Austrian Alps. Microbial Ecology (2023) 86: 763–776,
  • CHEKANOV, K. (2023): Diversity and Distribution of Carotenogenic Algae in Europe: A Review. Mar. Drugs,
  • ROUX, S. et al. (2023): Updated Virophage Taxonomy and Distinction from Polinton-like Viruses. Biomolecules 13: 204.
  • ŠIMEK, K., MUKHERJEE, I., SZÖKE-NAGY, T. et al. (2023): Cryptic and ubiquitous aplastidic cryptophytes are key freshwater flagellated bacterivores. ISME J 17: 84–94,    
  • BURPEE, B.T., SAROS, J.E., NANUS, L., BARON, J., BRAHNEY, J., CHRISTIANSON, K.R., GANZ, T., HEARD, A., HUNDEY, B., KOINIG, K.A., KOPÁČEK, J., MOSER, K., NYDICK, K., OLEKSY, I., SADRO, S., SOMMARUGA, R., VINEBROOKE, R. & WILLIAMS, J.  (2022): Identifying factors that affect mountain lake sensistivity to atmospheric nitrogen deposition across multiple scales. Water Research 209, 117883,
  • DOKULIL, M. (2022): Impacts of Climate Warming on Alpine Lakes. Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Climate Science.
  • EISENDLE, D.,  MEDGYESY, N., NIEDRIST, G.H.,  KAINZ, M.J. & SOMMARUGA, R. (2022): Diet composition and quality of a Salmo trutta (L.) population stocked in a high mountain lake since the Middle Ages. Science of the Total Environment, 853: 158415,
  • KOPEJTKA, K., TOMASCH, J., KAFTAN, D., GARDINER, A. T., BÍNA, D., GARDIAN, Z., BELLAS, C., DRÖGE, A., GEFFERS, R., SOMMARUGA, R. & KOBLÍŽEK, M. (2022): A bacterium from a mountain lake harvests light using both proton-pumping xanthorhodopsins and bacteriochlorophyll-based photosystems. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA 119: 50,
  • SCHMELLER, D.S., URBACH, D., BATES, K. et al. (2022): Scientists' warning of threats to mountains. Science of the Total Environment, 853: 158611, 
  • TARTAROTTI, B., SOMMARUGA, R. & SAUL, N. (2022): Phenotypic and molecular responses of copepods to UV radiation stress in a clear vs. a glacially turbid lake. Freshwater Biology 67: 1456-1467,
  • BELLAS C. M. & SOMMARUGA R. (2021): Polinton-like viruses are abundant in aquatic ecosystems. Microbiome 9, No. 13,
  • FERNANDEZ P., VAN DROOGE B. L., ARELLANO L. & GRIMALT J. O. (2021): Atmospheric deposition of semivolatile organic pollutants in European high mountains: Sources, settling and chemical degradation. Science of The Total Environment, Volume 784, 147099, ISSN 0048-9697,
  • KOPEJTA K., ZENG Y., KAFTAN D., SELYANIN V., GARDIAN Z., TOMASCH J., SOMMARUGA R. & KOBLÍZEK M. (2021): Characterization of the Aerobic Anoxygenic Phototrophic Bacterium Sphingomonas sp. AAP5. Microorganisms 9: 768,
  • WERNER N., ORFANOUDAKI M., HARTMANN A., GANZERA M. & SOMMARUGA R. (2021): Low temporal dynamics of mycosporine‐like amino acids in benthic cyanobacteria from an alpine lake. Freshwater Biology 6:1, 169–176,
  • AGUILAR P. & SOMMARUGA R. (2020): The balance between deterministic and stochastic processes in structuring lake bacterioplankton community over time. Molecular Ecology 29:16, 3117 - 3130,
  • ELSER J.J., WU C.X., GONZALEZ A.L., SHAIN D.H., SMITH H.J., SOMMARUGA R., WILLIAMSON C.E., BRAHNEY J., HOTALING S., VANDERWALL J., YU J.L., AIZEN V., AIZEN E., BATTIN T.J., CAMASSA R., FENG X., JIANG H.C., LU L.X., QU J.J., REN Z., WEN J., WEN L.J., WOODS H.A., XIONG X., XU J., YU G.L., HARPER J.T. & SAROS J.E. (2020): Key rules of life and the fading cryosphere: impacts in alpine lakes and streams. Global Change Biology 26:12, 6644–6656, http:​/​/​/10.1111​/gcb.15362 
  • HARTMANN A., GLASER K., HOLZINGER A., GANZERA M. & KARSTEN U. (2020): Klebsormidin A and B, two new UV-sunscreen compounds in green microalgal Interfilum and Klebsormidium species (Streptophyta) from terrestrial habitats. Front. Microbiol., 11(499),
  • KOPEJTKA K., TOMASCH J., ZENG Y., SELYANIN V., DACHEV M., PIWOSZ K., TICHÝ M., BÍNA D., GARDIAN Z., BUNK B., BRINKMANN H., GEFFERS R., SOMMARUGA R. & KOBLIZEK M. (2020): Simultaneous presence of bacteriochlorophyll and xanthorhodopsin genes in a freshwater bacterium. mSystems 5/6, No. e01044-20, DOI: 10.1128/mSystems.01044-20
  • ZIMMERMANN-TIMM H., SHAH D. N. & TACHAMO SHAH R. D. (2020): Hochgebirgsgewässer im Wandel. In LOZÁN J. L., BRECKLE S.-W. GRAßL H., KASANG D., PAUL F. & SCHICKHOFF U. (eds.): Warnsignal Klima: Hochgebirge im Wandel: 187–193, doi:10.25592/warnsignal-klima.hochgebirge-im-wandel.28.

For more publications please visit the bibliography.

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