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This study reports the first preliminary results of the DYRESM-CAEDYM model application to a mid size sub-alpine lake (Lake Pusiano North Italy). The in-lake modelling is a part of a more general project called Pusiano Integrated Lake/Catchment project (PILE) whose final goal is to understand the hydrological and trophic relationship between lake and catchment, supporting the restoration plan of the lake through field data analysis and numerical models. DYRESM is a 1D-3D hydrodynamics model for predicting the vertical profile of temperature, salinity and density. CAEDYM is multi-component ecological model, used here as a phytoplankton-zooplankton processes based model, which includes algorithms to simulate the nutrient cycles within the water column as well as the air-water gas exchanges and the water-sediments fluxes. The first results of the hydrodynamics simulations underline the capability of the model to accurately simulate the surface temperature seasonal trend and the thermal gradient whereas, during summer stratification, the model underestimates the bottom temperature of around 2 °C. The ecological model describes the epilimnetic reactive phosphorus (PO4) depletion (due to the phytoplankton uptake) and the increase in PO4 concentrations in the deepest layers of the lake (due to the mineralization processes and the sediments release). In terms of phytoplankton dynamics the model accounts for the Planktothrix rubescens dominance during the whole season, whereas it seems to underestimate the peak in primary production related to both the simulated algal groups (P. rubescens and the rest of the other species aggregated in a single class). The future aims of the project are to complete the model parameterization and to connect the in-lake and the catchment modelling in order to gain an integrated view of the lake-catchment ecosystem as well as to develop a three dimensional model of the lake.
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