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Director of Research and Education

DRE - Lesley Knoll

I joined Lacawac Sanctuary in January 2012 as the Director of Research and Education.


I am a broadly trained aquatic ecologist and have worked extensively in streams, lakes, and human-made impoundments. My interests include lake-watershed interactions, ecosystem ecology, and biogeochemistry. My research largely examines community-level and ecosystem-level responses of aquatic systems to human disturbances, such as degraded watershed land use.


Google Scholar



  • Knoll, L.B., M.J. Vanni, W.H. Renwick, E.K. Dittman, J.A. Gephart. 2013. Temperate reservoirs are large carbon sinks and small CO2 sources: Results from high-resolution carbon budgets. Global Biogeochemical Cycles. doi:10.1029/2012GB004322.
  • White, J.D., R.B. Kaul, L.B. Knoll, A.E. Wilson, and O. Sarnelle. 2011 Large variation in vulnerability to grazing within a population of the colonial phytoplankter, Microcystis aeruginosa. Limnology and Oceanography 56: 1714-1724.
  • Kissman, C.E.H., L.B. Knoll, and O. Sarnelle. 2010. Dreissenid mussels (Dreissena polymorpha and Dreissena bugensis) reduce microzooplankton and macrozooplankton biomass in thermally stratified lakes. Limnology and Oceanography 55: 1851-1859.
  • González, M.J., L.B. Knoll, and M.J. Vanni. 2010. Differential effects of elevated nutrient and sediment inputs on survival, growth and biomass of a common larval fish species. Freshwater Biology 55: 654-669.
  • Tranvik, L.J., J.A. Downing, J.B. Cotner, S.A. Loiselle, R.G. Striegl, T.J. Ballatore, P. Dillon, K. Finlay, K. Fortino, L.B. Knoll, P.L. Kortelainen, T. Kutser, S. Larsen, I. Laurion, D.M. Leech, S.L. McCallister, D.M. McKnight, J.M. Melack, E. Overholt, J.A. Porter, Y. Prairie, W.H. Renwick, F. Roland, B.S. Sherman, D.W. Schindler, S. Sobek, A. Tremblay, M.J. Vanni, A.M Verschoor, E. von Wachenfeldt, and G.A. Weyhenmeyer. 2009. Lakes and reservoirs as regulators of carbon cycling and climate. Limnology and Oceanography 54: 2298-2314.
  • Knoll, L.B., P.B. McIntyre, M.J. Vanni, and A.S. Flecker. 2009. Feedbacks of consumer nutrient recycling on producer biomass and stoichiometry: separating direct and indirect effect. Oikos 118: 1732-1742.
  • Knoll, L.B., O. Sarnelle, S.K. Hamilton, C.E.H. Kissman, A.E. Wilson, J.B. Rose, and M.R. Morgan. 2008. Invasive zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) increase cyanobacterial toxin concentrations in low-nutrient lakes. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 65: 448-455.
  • Vanni M.J., A.M. Bowling, E.M. Dickman, R.S. Hale, K.A. Higgins, M.J. Horgan, L.B. Knoll, W.H. Renwick, and R.A. Stein. 2006. Nutrient cycling by fish supports relatively more primary production as lake productivity increases. Ecology 87: 1696-1709.
  • Sarnelle, O., A.E. Wilson, S.K. Hamilton, L.B. Knoll, and D.F. Raikow. 2005. Complex interactions between the zebra mussel, Dreissena polymorpha and the harmful phytoplankton, Microcystis aeruginosa. Limnology and Oceanography 50: 896-904.
  • Knoll, L.B., M.J. Vanni, and W.H. Renwick. 2003. Phytoplankton primary productivity and photosynthetic parameters in reservoirs along a gradient of watershed land use. Limnology and Oceanography 48: 608-617.