Why is there slime in this lake? and other questions from the life of a lake scientist

Karla Münzner

I am a biologist at Uppsala University. I’m currently pursuing a PhD in Limnology about the slimy alga Gonyostomum semen (or "gubbslem"). My goal is to find out why you can find this alga in so many brown lakes, and how its slimy blooms impact lake ecosystems. You might have seen me or my floating buoys in lakes around Uppsala during the last two summers!

Before becoming a scientist, I studied environmental management at the Technical University Cottbus (Germany) and aquatic ecology at Lund University. I enjoy hiking, playing badminton and reading as many books as possible.

My Soapbox Science talk

Did you know that there are many slimy algae blooms in Sweden every year? That's because the alga Gonyostomum semen (or "gubbslem") really likes to hang out in brown lakes here. Touch it, and it will explode into brown slime! But why does it like brown lakes so much, and could it be bad for Swedish lakes and us? Let me tell you how I look for "gubbslem" in lakes close to Uppsala, and how I follow it from small cells to huge blooms.

Photo Karla Münzner
Last modified: 2022-05-24