The Return of Native Zooplankton Aided Tahoe Clarity Efforts in 2022
For the last five months of 2022, Lake Tahoe was the clearest it has been since the 1980s. That is
due in part to a resurgence of the lake’s native zooplankton. They’ve provided a natural cleanup crew to help restore the lake’s famous blue waters.
The findings are reported in the “Lake Tahoe Clarity Report 2022,” released today from the UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center (TERC) for the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency.
Clarity sinks in
Clarity is measured as the depth to which a 10-inch white disk, called a Secchi disk, remains
visible when lowered into the water.
In 2022, Lake Tahoe’s average annual clarity was 71.7 feet compared to 61 feet in 2021. The key
finding from 2022 was the great improvement in lake clarity from August through December, when the average Secchi depth was 80.6 feet. This coincided with the highest numbers of the
zooplankton Daphnia and Bosmina.
The states of California and Nevada, which share a border at Lake Tahoe, are actively working to
restore lake clarity to its historic 97.4 feet…