Schoolship Data and Figures

Schoolship Data

Inland Seas has been monitoring the health of Grand Traverse Bay since 1989. Since then, a number of powerful new species – including quagga mussels and the round goby – have arrived in the Great Lakes and caused massive changes. Our data capture several of those changes. We are monitoring:

  • Forage fish species and numbers
  • Plankton species in the whole water column
  • Water quality: water clarity, surface and bottom water temperature, bottom pH, and bottom dissolved oxygen
  • Benthos (critters at the bottom of the lake) species and numbers

Archived Data

Inland Seas is currently engaged in a massive upgrade to our science database. Archived files of our data are available in the Northwestern Michigan College’s Online Water Library (OWL). Search for Inland Seas to find our data from 1989-2013.

For data from 2014 to the present, please contact the ISEA office at

Graphs and Figures

Every year we create new graphs to illustrate the trends we observed. Teachers can use these graphs to prepare students for their visit, or process the experience after the field trip. The general public might be interested to know what is happening in Grand Traverse and Suttons Bay. Some of the graphs display change since 1989.

2017 Graphs

2016 Graphs

Data Sets

This is where you can find summarized datasets that can be used for lessons in the classroom.

Secchi disk depth in Suttons Bay and Grand Traverse Bay, 1989-present: ISEA Annual Secchi Depth Data for Schools

Diving Deeper Data

Diving Deeper is a research-based shipboard program that allows students to focus on a single topic. This program launched in Spring of 2015 and looks to answer these questions:

  • What is the density of quagga mussels in Suttons Bay?
  • How does the concentration of microplastics change over time?
  • How does plankton composition change with depth?
  • What is the best bait for catching round gobies?
  • How do temperature, dissolved oxygen, and pH vary in the with depth?

Diving Deeper 2016

The data collected in 2016 by Diving Deeper Students is found here!

Diving Deeper 2016

Diving Deeper 2015

All of the data and data analysis for 2015 is right here!

Diving Deeper Data Analysis 2015 This PDF file guides you through the figures – what questions do you ask to make sense of the data? Students: How should we redesign our studies for 2016? Please give your suggestions!

Diving Deeper 2015 Figures This powerpoint presentation includes all of the Figures created in the data analysis. It works with the PDF file above.

If you want to go even deeper, below are the spreadsheets for each data set. First is the spreadsheet for all of the data, and it includes the data only. After that are spreadsheets for each type of data, which include the data and the analysis so you can see how each of the figures were created.

Diving Deeper Student Data 2015

Mussels Diving Deeper 2015

Benthos Midge Diving Deeper 2015

Fish Diving Deeper 2015

Hydro Profile Diving Deeper 2015

Plankton Diving Deeper 2015

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