Lake Kinneret, Israel, is a warm monomictic subtropical lake situated at the northern part of the Syrian-African Rift Valley at elevation of -209 m (i.e. below sea level). The lake has a surface area of 170 km2, volume of nearly 4000 million cubic m, mean depth of 24 m and maximum depth of 43 m. It is the only natural freshwater lake in the region and supplies ca. 50% of the drinking water of Israel. The lake is stratified from March-April till December-January, when turnover takes place. Its hypolimnion is anaerobic, with hydrogen sulfide concentrations reaching 8 - 10 mg/L before turnover.
The plankton life of Lake Kinneret has been followed regularly since 1969 as part of a routine monitoring program of the lake funded by the Israel Water Commission and conducted by the Kinneret Limnoloigical Laboratory (KLL), Israel Oceanographic & Limnological Research, Ltd (IOLR). This program includes physical, chemical and biological variables, among those phytoplankton and zooplankaton identification and counts.
Dr. Tamar Zohary and Dr. Alla Alster are research scientists at the Kinneret Limnological Laboratory that are studying the phytoplankton populations of the lake. As part of a research grant given as a contribution by the North American Friends of IOLR, it is our goal to put on the internet a picture catalog of the variety of plankton life known from the lake. We will start with phytoplankton, our main focus of interest. This image was taken by Gil Ferster, Kinneret Limnological Laboratory, Israel Oceanographic & Limnological Researh Cpyright Gil Ferster, image used with permission.