In boreal lakes, increased precipitation events have been linked to increased concentrations of dissolved organic carbon (DOC), however the effects of seasonal differences on DOC and how this may impact storm response remain unclear. We evaluated DOC concentration and a set of DOC quality metrics during an early summer storm and an autumn storm on a suite of six lakes in Acadia National Park in Maine, USA. to better understand differences in seasonal storm responses. Our results revealed differences in the response of DOC quality metrics to an early summer versus an autumn storm, with changes in DOC quality metrics varying by storm and lake features. During the early summer storm, we observed greater changes in various DOC quality metrics in deep lakes with longer residence times, whereas during the autumn storm, lakes with large watershed area to lake area ratios experienced the greatest changes. Land cover was highly correlated with changing DOC quality metrics in the early summer storm but did not play a significant role in the autumn storm response. Our research provides evidence of seasonal differences in the effects of storms on boreal lakes, which are ultimately mediated by a combination of lake and watershed characteristics as well as seasonal differences in climate such as solar radiation and antecedent weather conditions.
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