Prof. Pienitz visited today students at Sportslycée. They discussed diatom research in the Canadian Arctic and did a series of hands on experiences in their lab.
The following picture of a diatom was taken by a student during their lab experience with Prof. Pienitz:
Professor in the Department of Geography, Université Laval (Québec City, Canada), Dr. Reinhard Pienitz leads the Aquatic Paleoecology Laboratory at Centre d’Études Nordiques (CEN). He supervises and co-supervises the research of graduate students and post-doctoral researchers in the fields of paleolimnology and paleoceanography, in both the Departments of geography and biology. The paleolimnologic research in his laboratory focuses on the use of fossil freshwater algae (diatoms), insects (chironomid larvae) and invertebrates (cladocera, ostracods) preserved in the sediments of arctic lakes and ponds (Labrador, Nunavik (northern Québec), Nunavut, Northwest Territories and Yukon/Alaska, Scandinavia) to reconstruct changes in climate and the environment during post-glacial times. The remains of marine diatoms and dinocysts in sedimentary deposits of coastal regions serve as indicators of changes in paleo-currents, paleoproductivity and past sea-level fluctuations in paleoceanographic studies along the Canadian West Coast, the Beaufort Sea coast (southern Arctic Ocean) and the Canadian East Coast (Labrador fjords). During past years, his research has also focused on the recovery and study of long-term climate archives from crater lake ecosystems in Nunavik (Pingualuit Crater Lake project) and southern Patagonia (PASADO project). In addition, research projects that determine the impact of animal populations (snow geese, caribous) and mining activities on the water quality of drinking water reservoirs have been completed in the Arctic, as well as assessments of the effects of urban and agricultural pollution on lakes in the Québec City region. He administers the Circumpolar Diatom Database (CDD) since 1997 and published more than 200 scientific articles, book chapters and books on diatoms and their use in the field of paleolimnology.